Self-Otherness in Tourism. A Semiotic Analysis of China Travel Posters

Neus Crous-Costa

Universitat de Girona, Laboratory of Multidisciplinary Research in Tourism (LMRT)


Abstract: The aim of this paper is to contribute to the discussion of how otherness takes shape in the discipline of travel and tourism, and how it relates to neighbouring fields such as postcolonial and decolonial studies. First, we will expose how otherness is regarded in tourism research. Second, we will conduct a semiotic study of travel posters, focusing on the representation of otherness in advertising. Methodology includes the study of a sample made up of 29 travel posters using a table adapted from Vergara-Leyton, Garrido-Peña and Undurraga-Puelma (2013). The results of this analysis show some interesting points: China’s political – territorial complexities, appropriation of the Orientalist (folklorised imaginary) for tourism promotion purposes, which can be linked to cultural diplomacy and changes in global power dynamics.

Keywords: tourism, poster, marketing, otherness, self-Orientalism, postcolonial studies.

Rhetoric and Communications Journal, issue 51, April 2022

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