Tourism is generally regarded as the worlds largest industry, with massive impacts on people's lives. Unfortunately, it also usually exports the values and presuppositions that are associated with its own cultural origins. Given this, it is surprising that the ethical issues that surround tourism development have received little academic attention. This book draws upon a variety of important philosophical traditions to develop an original perspective on the relations between ethical, economic and aesthetic values in a tourism context. It considers the ethical/political issues arising in many areas of tourism development, including the profound cultural and environmental impacts on tourist destinations; the reciprocity (or lack of) in host-guest relations; the (un)fair distribution of benefits and revenues; and the moral implications of issues like sex tourism, staged authenticity and travel to oppressive regimes. The book concludes with a detailed investigation of the potential and pitfalls of ecotourism, sustainable tourism and community based tourism, as examples of what is sometimes termed ethical tourism.
The authors explain philosophical arguments without the use of excessive jargon. Their interweaving of theory and practise is facilitated by the use of text boxes to explain key terms in ethics, politics, and tourism development and by drawing on contemporary case studies from South Africa, Mexico, Zambia, Honduras, Ethiopia and Madagascar to illuminate the ethical problems associated with tourism.