'Locating' or 'dislocating' heritage and cultural tourism within the humanities

29 January 2014

Heritage and cultural tourism (HCT) is currently one of the fastest growing fields in the tourism domain. Tourism as a composite field of study has traditionally been located within the economic and business management sector. However, due to the range of social, political and ethical issues pertaining to heritage and cultural tourism, it can be argued that it should be also located within a humanities context. After elucidating certain key concepts, the paper will consider the interdisciplinary nature of tourism with specific reference to the groundbreaking work of the leading international tourism theorist John Tribe. The relevance of tourism and its relationship with the humanities cluster of established disciplines such as anthropology, sociology, art, literature, history and heritage will be discussed. It will become apparent that heritage and cultural tourism is also locating itself within the domain of the humanities, despite efforts to dislocate it.