The decolonisation of ‘Africa’ in tourism: the representation and misrepresentation of African being and becoming
African indigenous methodology
Subject Categories::N800 Tourism, Transport and Travel
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AbstractThis study starts from the general premise that over recent centuries Africa and Africans have not only been commonly represented under the hegemonic Eurocentric yoke, but the continent and its peoples have been misrepresented under that governing Western/European apparatus. It also holds that over the last century especially, Africa and Africans have been significantly misrepresented (sometimes consciously, sometimes unconsciously) under the projective authority and agency of tourism as it deals in images and narratives either borne within the industrial scripting power of tourism itself, or otherwise from symbolisations in other prescriptive/mediating industries. In order to discursively explore these matters of representation/misrepresentation, the study is scaffolded around two study problems: the first and main purpose of the investigation is to examine how Africa/Africans are signified today by lead African commentators vis-à-vis the way others signify them. The second problem seeks to explore how prominent Indigenous commentators across the world critique the representation of Indigenous populations under the so-called contemporary decolonising moment. The function of the subsidiary study problem is to shed contextual light on the representation/misrepresentation of Africa/Africans through such interleaved mediating industries. This emergent study began as an inquiry into the othering of Africa/Africans, but it gradually evolved into a study not so much of the projected/mediated 'other' but of the cultural or signified 'hybrid', because of ongoing difficulties in coherently determining who Africans were in the past, should be in the present, and could be in the future. This study gravitated into a Deleuzean critique of not so much fixed or preferred identity, but of the intensities today by which tourism, collaborative industries, and Africans themselves each tend to palpate particular lines of-flight declarations of being and becoming in often porous and protean (and not-easily-predictable) ways. This constitutes an interpretive study of Foucauldian governmentality as it seeks to examine texts and discourses that declare what Africa is and who Africans are, and is predominantly informed via social constructivist methodologies emanating from Lincoln and Guba, and from Chilisa, translated to African experiences. This emergent study of the decolonisation of Africa/Africans through tourism and collaborative inscriptive industries comprises an unfurling critique of the juxtaposition of representations of being with African notions of Ubuntu. Sadly, the strictures of time prevented the completion of a multi-term glossary of African interpretations of being and becoming so the unmet aims of the study have been translated into an ongoing research agenda with which the investigator will be engaged over the next decade.
CitationVellah, A. (2017) 'The Decolonisation of 'Africa' in Tourism: The Representation and Misrepresentation of African Being and Becoming'. PhD thesis. University of Bedfordshire.
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
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