Fulfills Literature, Intermediate
This course explores the connections between politics and tourism in Africa, past and present. One key question will guide this course: how does African tourism history reflect larger political trajectories and cultural concerns in the continent and beyond? Among the themes we explore are: nature tourism (aka safaris), volunteering tourism, political tourism by world leaders, poverty tourism, small-town tourism development in southern Africa, heritage tourism of diaspora Africans, and contemporary African travel bloggers. Students will be encouraged to think critically about individuals on the continent and beyond who have differently imagined lived realities and politicized experiences in Africa through varied forms of tourism.
Because this is an interdisciplinary class, course materials will draw from diverse disciplines and sources, including comic strips, graphic novels, animated cartoons, newspapers, films, podcasts, documentaries, Instagram, street art, and scholarly texts. Course readings will include A History of Tourism in Africa Exoticization, Exploitation, and Enrichment (2021) by Todd Cleveland. The lecture schedule will include several “Scholar meets ACS students” sessions in which various guest speakers share their works on related course topics with students.