Curtin, S. C., 2009. Wildlife Tourism: The Intangible, Psychological Benefits of Human-Wildlife Encounters. Current Issues in Tourism, 12 (5&6), pp. 451-474.
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This paper presents the results of an ethnographic study of wildlife tourists. The findings reveal the commonalities and complexities of the wildlife experience during wildlife encounters at home and whilst on holiday. Nature’s design, performance and immense biodiversity initiate an emotional response of awe, wonder and privilege which unlocks eco-centric and anthropomorphic connections to wild animals and a feeling which is ‘beyond words’. There is time to stand and stare, and contemplate. Nature and wildlife are not only spatial events but also temporal ones too. In this liminal, embodied space of a wildlife encounter, socially constructed modern fast time dissipates and is replaced by stillness and nature’s time whereby participants are totally absorbed in the spectacle. All thought and action is concentrated on the moment. This provokes a deep sense of well-being which transcends the initial encounter leading to spiritual fulfilment and psychological health benefits. The implications of this research has relevance to environmental conservation particularly the recognition that conserving habitats and wildlife has an intrinsic connection to the future well-being of the human population who are part of the ecosystem and not separate from it.
|Uncontrolled Keywords:||wildlife; tourism; psychological benefits|
|Subjects:||Social Sciences > Tourism|
|Group:||School of Tourism > International Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research|
|Deposited By:||Dr Susanna Curtin|
|Deposited On:||24 Sep 2009 08:52|
|Last Modified:||07 Mar 2013 15:14|
Available Versions of this Item
- Wildlife Tourism: The Intangible, Psychological Benefits of Human / Wildlife Encounters. (deposited 23 Oct 2008 18:47)
- Wildlife Tourism: The Intangible, Psychological Benefits of Human-Wildlife Encounters. (deposited 24 Sep 2009 08:52) [Currently Displayed]
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