University of Tasmania
whole_YoungFrederickDavid1995_thesis.pdf (39.67 MB)

Profiting from the past : the relationship between history and the tourist industry in Tasmania, 1856-1972

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posted on 2023-05-27, 14:06 authored by Young, FD
This thesis traces the developing relationship between history and the tourist industry in Tasmania from 1856 to 1972. Its title, Profiting from the Past, has two meanings, both major themes of the work. The first meaning, the literal, implies that the past may be treated as a commodity from which money may be made. The second meaning, the metaphorical, implies that people may benefit from a knowledge and understanding of what has gone before. That Tasmania had a past was all too apparent to both locals and tourists in 1856, the year in which the island was declared an independent colony-yet there was no \historical tourism\" as such. By 1972 the year when a newly-created government department assumed control of the state's major historical sites both Tasmania's generalised \"past\" and its wealth of discrete historical attractions many of them \"commodified\" were as large a factor in luring tourists to the state as was its much vaunted scenery. Throughout the period in question the manner in which Tasmania's past has been sought by tourists promoted to them and in some instances kept from them is examined and the benefits which they hoped to find in Tasmania's past are analysed. This analysis is carried out in the light of categories of 'past-related benefits' identified by David Lowenthal in The Past is a Foreign Country. The work of the promoters interpreters and exploiters of Tasmania's past is also considered. The inquiry into the ideologies driving this group is conducted in the light of J H Plumb's analysis in The Death of the Past. The development of historical tourism is also described in relation to the growth of Tasmania's tourist industry as a whole to the development of Tasmanian historiography and to the changing sensibilities of the Tasmanians themselves as they struggled to come to terms with a problematic past often from the standpoint of an unsatisfactory present. The effect of \"development\" and the role of the conservation movement are considered where these factors have influenced the evolution of the \"tourist-historical-landscape\" and hence the tourist industry. In every aspect of the selling of Tasmania's past its material preservation interpretation and promotion there has been both· an ideological and a commercial element. This thesis concludes that in general the latter has overridden the former - thus literal profit has determined the nature of metaphorical profit. The implications this conclusion holds both for Tasmania's \"heritage\" and its \"heritage industry\" are considered in a closing chapter."


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Copyright 1995 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s). Library has additional copy on microfiche. Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Tasmania, 1995. Includes bibliographical references

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