A-19/13 Conceptualising authentication of ruralness

Authenticity, a key asset to rural tourism, is a problematic concept. The debate on authenticity has so far proven unable to deliver a conceptual route for analysing the workings of such notions in rural tourism. Here a Halfacreean-approach to rural space as a threefold emergence, in which ideas, locality and practices interacts, is put forth, from which a framework to analyse rural tourism’s authentication of ruralness is suggested. This is then deployed on empirical data from four Norwegian rural tourism cases. The article demonstrates the analytical abilities of the framework, uncovering, among other aspects, the political nature of authentication and the role of rural tourism consumption in authenticating the ‘rural idyll’ as the ‘authentic’ ruralness. Annals of Tourism Research, Vol 43: 272-296

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