Thursday, February 28, 2013

Dr. Gregory Ramshaw on the commodification of nostalgia

Please listen to the entire interview here; many thanks to CIUT FM for originally broadcasting the discussion.

Gregory Ramshaw is an assistant professor in the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management at Clemson University, South Carolina. He has taught and written and extensively about the social and cultural implications of heritage-based tourist attractions, with a particular focus on sport heritage sites. Prior to life in the academy, he worked at western Canada’s largest living history museum, dressing up in costume and pretending it was 1846 for the visiting tourists (which is--full disclosure--where we first met. Best. Job. Ever).

Greg first introduced the distinction between history and heritage (a difference in temperature: cold versus warm), then dug into some of the many purposes heritage serves in Western culture. Specifically, heritage contributes to the construction and prioritization of particular narratives within a society's culture. Consequently, it's a valuable asset for governments of various levels, corporations of various sizes--oh, and the sports teams themselves (in this example), who play the roles, enact the storylines, and become the subjects of grand shared metaphors.

No comments:

Post a Comment