Institute of Geography and Sustainability of the University of Lausanne
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Imagining new ways of being through travel and tourism : Black Germans on tour

Research fields Cultures and natures of tourism
Keywords Tourism
Spiritual Retreat Tourism
Cultural and Social Anthropology
Funding PhD Student/Teaching Assistant position
Duration February 2016 >
Researchers Picard David (Supervision)
Wojczewski Silvia (Doctoral student) [web] [email]

The PhD project explores the relation between travel and identity. It is located in the field of the anthropology of tourism. Drawing from ethnographic data collected through a phenomenological approach of Black Germans living in Frankfurt and Berlin, the research aims to understand how the social category of nationality is experienced, embodied, performed, negotiated, contested, transformed and reproduced in the context of travel. The first influential works on the relation between tourism and identity emerge during the 1980s, namely by a team of social scientists directed by Marie-Françoise Lanfant in France. The central analytical category is identity approached through the study of lived experience, conscious and unconscious actions, gestures, emotions and feelings. The methodology is based on two main elements: (a) participant observation during travels and (b) biographic interviews with participants to understand the development of their identities and the importance that travel and tourism has in it.