Although blurred and heavily contested, the concept of ’tourist destination’ still deserves careful attention. Despite its unstable characteristics, ’destination’ is a central and meaningful term in play among all parties in the field of tourism, including tourists, tourism operators, and politicians, as well as students and tourism scholars. This anthology draws on different approaches and discourses of tourism destination development, while focusing on how they are shaped and reshaped and how they should be read and rehearsed. The book reveals dominant as well as alternative approaches to the field. The authors demonstrate how tourism destinations are commercial, but socially embedded; how they are both material and territorial, but at the same time socially constructed; how production of touristic brands and images are vital, but contested. Such tensions are unfolded through paradigmatic discussions and a series of case studies from the northern hemisphere. The chapters in the book investigate how destination development is catalysed through theming, how changing environments lead to reorientations, and how destinations are political. Altogether, the book provides experts and students with an up-to-date theoretical and empirical insight into tourist destinations.
’The destination is central to the study of tourism but it is easy for the concept to become a somewhat simplistic territorial one overly infused by analysis of economics, marketing and strategy. This book digs far deeper into the intellectual roots of the destination. It spends adequate critical time grappling with meaning; it provides rich illustration through case studies and offers new insights into the re-orientation of destination studies.’ John Tribe, University of Surrey, UK ’If tourism’s formative power in the making of societies is acknowledged, few contributions take this point as comprehensively into social science as this impressive volume edited by Viken and GranÃ¥s. Through critical thinking and theoretically informative case studies, readers are taken aboard reflexive and situated investigations of the plural and multiple ways in which tourist destinations develop.’ JÃ¸rgen Ole BÃ¦renholdt, Roskilde University, Denmark