Cohen, S., 2006. Flowing through life; long-term travel as a lifestyle alternative. In: ATLAS Asia Pacific Conference: Tourism after Oil, 3-5 December 2006, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. (Unpublished)
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Within social psychology and leisure literature over the last three decades, Csikszentmihalyi has constructed the term ‘flow’ in describing the particular state of being that an individual may experience while engaging in intrinsically motivated actions. While researchers have examined the concept of flow in a number of dimensions, applications within a tourism context have been limited. This may be due to flow’s perceived temporality and usual association with activity. In contrast, as flow experience is characterised by increasing skill and complexity in individuals over time, it may be more valuable to view flow in an experiential light cast over an extended timeframe. For many individuals in the Western world that lack flow in their everyday lives, life satisfaction has become increasingly elusive. In reaction to this deficiency, a growing number of individuals are seeking alternative lifestyles that may be distinguished by a higher level of flow than is found in the typical, rooted world. This conceptual paper examines the concept of flow in the context of the long-term travel lifestyle. It is argued that the structure of the long-term travel lifestyle lends itself to reoccurring episodes of flow more readily than normative life in late modernity. Based on a review of the characteristics of flow and their role within the long-term travel experience, it is concluded that the drive to replicate flow experience serves as a primary motivator for individuals to continue the long-term travel lifestyle. The significance of the paper lies in both expanding flow’s application past its typical temporal limitations and into tourism discourse, while at the same time, serving to explain why individuals travel as a lifestyle choice.
|Item Type:||Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)|
|Subjects:||Arts > Sports|
Social Sciences > Tourism
|Group:||School of Tourism > Centre for Event and Sport Research|
|Deposited By:||Dr Scott Cohen LEFT|
|Deposited On:||26 Jan 2010 20:33|
|Last Modified:||07 Mar 2013 15:20|
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