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Tourism development and changing rural identity in China

Lan Xue, Deborah Kerstetter and Carter Hunt

Annals of Tourism Research, 2017, vol. 66, issue C, 170-182

Abstract: This study examines the patterns and driving factors of identity change amongst residents of Chongdu Valley, China, who have been experiencing tourism development since the mid-1990s. Employing semi-structured interviews and participant observation, this study uncovered four types of identity change in the community: (1) a transition from notions of rural hardship to notions of rural amenity; (2) a corresponding transition from a sense of rural shame to a sense of rural pride; (3) an overall rise in community identity; and (4) rural identity became less “rural.” Residents’ identity changes can be attributed to three factors: shifted government policies, improved living standards, and host-guest interaction. The findings suggest that material changes brought by tourism development can impact residents’ rural identity change.

Keywords: Community development; Identity; Rural; Chongdu Valley (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Handle: RePEc:eee:anture:v:66:y:2017:i:c:p:170-182