Summary and Info
This book examines Japanese tourism and travel, both today and in the past, showing how over hundreds of years a distinct culture of travel developed, and exploring how this has permeated the perceptions and traditions of Japanese society. It considers the diverse dimensions of modern tourism including appropriation and consumption of history, nostalgia, identity, domesticated foreignness, and the search for authenticity and invention of tradition. Japanese people are one of the most widely travelling peoples in the world both historically and in contemporary times. What may be understood as incipient mass tourism started around the 17th century in various forms (including religious pilgrimages) long before it became a prevalent cultural phenomenon in the West. Within Asia, Japan has long remained the main tourist sending society since the beginning of the 20th century when it started colonising Asian countries. In 2005, some 17.8 million Japanese travelled overseas across Europe, Asia, the South Pacific and America. In recent times, however, tourist demands are fast growing in other Asian countries such as Korea and China. Japan is not only consuming other Asian societies and cultures, it is also being consumed by them in tourist contexts. This book considers the patterns of travelling of the Japanese, examining travel inside and outside the Japanese archipelago and how tourist demands inside influence and shape patterns of travel outside the country. Overall, this book draws important insights for understanding the phenomenon of tourism on the one hand and the nature of Japanese society and culture on the other.