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|Title:||The Self as Enterprise: Volunteer Tourism in the Global South|
|Abstract:||<p> This study explores the increasingly popular phenomenon of volunteer tourism in the Global South, particularly the governmental rationalities and socio-economic conditions that valorize it as a noble and necessary cultural practice. Using ethnographic material gathered during two volunteering programs in Guatemala and Ghana, I argue that, although volunteer tourism may not trigger social change, provide meaningful encounters with difference, or offer professional expertise, as the brochure discourse often promises, the formula remains a useful strategy for producing the subjects and social relations neoliberalism requires. The value of volunteer tourism should not to be assessed in terms of the goods and services it delivers to the global poor, but in terms of how well the pratice disseminates entrepreneurial styles of feeling and action. Three merits stand out in particular. First, volunteer tourism mobilizes a series of affective competencies and private sensibilities that fit the global logic of capitalism. Second, it represents a new type of moral and technical education that teaches young adults how. to operate in multicultural settings and globalized sites. Finally, by virtue of having lived and worked in places the Western imagination believes to be destitute and dangerous, volunteer tourists are better positioned to live fully in the global moment. Together, these effects demonstrate that, far from being a selfless and history-less rescue act, volunteer tourism is in fact a strategy of power that extends economic rationality, particularly its emphasis on entrepreneurship and competition, to the realm of political subjectivity. </p>|
|Appears in Collections:||Open Access Dissertations and Theses|
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|Vrasti_Wanda_2010_phd.pdf||10.96 MB||Adobe PDF||View/Open|
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