Authenticity lost? The significance of cultural villages in the conservation of heritage in South Africa

Chris Boonzaaier*, Harry Wels

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Based on a(n) (interrupted) period of 15 years of fieldwork, this study explores the question whether cultural villages in South Africa are to be considered an effective way to conserve a particular cultural heritage in an authentic way. In order to answer this question, three notions of authenticity are juxtaposed with three types of cultural villages. The outcomes reveal a nuanced answer that suggests that some types of cultural villages do contribute to the conservation of an authentic cultural heritage, but not all. The research also shows how cultural heritage tourism is often haunted and influenced by old colonial stereotypes and exoticism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-193
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Heritage Tourism
Volume13
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Keywords

  • authenticity
  • commoditisation
  • cultural heritage
  • Cultural villages
  • exoticism

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