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Y Wladfa Gymreig: outbound diasporic tourism and contribution to identity
Tourism Geographies, Pages: 1 - 22
Swansea University Author: Carl Cater
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Diasporic tourism is acknowledged as a powerful force in travel, but there has been more focus to date on inbound forms. Significant outbound Welsh diasporic tourism takes place to the colony known as Y Wladfa Gymreig in Argentinean Patagonia, founded in 1865. The Welsh Patagonian example is interes...
|Published in:||Tourism Geographies|
Taylor & Francis Group
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Diasporic tourism is acknowledged as a powerful force in travel, but there has been more focus to date on inbound forms. Significant outbound Welsh diasporic tourism takes place to the colony known as Y Wladfa Gymreig in Argentinean Patagonia, founded in 1865. The Welsh Patagonian example is interesting because it is a settlement-based phenomenon, which has had less academic focus than those centred on ‘homecoming’. Travelling to a place of dispersion may also generate strong cultural attachment and emotional connection, particularly where identity politics in the origin has become diluted through globalisation. Using Bond and Falk’s tourism and identity-related motivation theoretical framework, we examine tourists who have visited this unusual destination. Questionnaires with potential tourists as well as interviews with visitors are combined with a research visit to the region to investigate the framework aspects of identity development; identity maintenance and identity moderation and reconstruction. Attributes that framed identity construction were experiencing Welshness, personal connections, events, nostalgia, novelty, language, and loyalty. We also found the potential for such visits to unsettle identity, so that ultimately articulation of ‘home’ is far from being fixed or permanent in the tourism context. These findings illustrate the dynamic and hybrid nature of identity, and the importance of tourism in its negotiation.
Diaspora, identity, Wales, Patagonia, Argentina, Home, nostalgia, language, colonialization
School of Management