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Souvenir Geographies

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Zhu-yun Zang

on 23 September 2014

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Transcript of Souvenir Geographies

Souvenir Geographies
Zhuyun Amy Zang

Making Site
In UK:
a souvenir factory in UK, ideally a Scottish one, which makes tartan.
Transport site
Transport sites are mainly non-places: airports, train stations (Augé, 1994). Souvenirs are seen in transport sites often.
In-depth interview -- go to participants houses.

Image analysis -- contact participants by email, and analyze photos of souvenirs. Focus on banal souvenir.
Tourists Site
How souvenirs make tourists site.
Presentation Structure
Research Questions
Literature on souvenirs
Questions and comments?
Why am I interested in geographies of souvenirs?
1. Personal interest
2. Souvenirs are inherently geographical
3. Blank field in cultural geography to explore
Changes of plan
Research Questions
Pilot Field Work
Future Plans
Questions and Comments
I want to explore and answer these questions:

1. Souvenirs' authenticity.

2. How souvenirs' meanings change along with places (how places make souvenirs);

3. How souvenirs ‘make’ places in a triple layer – in the making sites, tourist sites, and the tourists’ homes.

Souvenirs have been largely and continuously ignored in social and cultural geography (SCG) research. Gordon’s (1986) typology of souvenirs is one of the earliest studies on souvenirs. He outlines five kinds of tourist souvenirs: pictorial, local product, piece of the rock, marker and symbolic shorthand.
   Morgan & Pritchard (2005) Souvenir & self-identity.
   Hashimoto & Telfer (2007) Authentic geographical souvenirs.
   Ramsay (2009) Souvenirs' home displacement as well as production, marketing, selling and purchasing in Swaziland.
   Peters (2011) 'Banal souvenirs' home placement.
   Souvenirs studying is an innovative and novel topic area in geographical fields, which promises to contribute to discussions in a range of geographical topics.
    Making site Toursit site Home
Object (image) analysis
Visual ethnography
Semi-structured interviews (making site and home)
   Postcard method (tourist site and transporting site)
   Participant observation
   Keeping fieldwork diary: text.image.video
Was to answer same questions in each site, now each site will have a focusing question.
Tourism, marketing, religion, philosophy ...
Pilot FieldWork
In China:
one for Chinese souvenirs,
and the other for outsourced UK souvenis.
Souvenir's authenticity.
And also, tax free products (luxuries) are treated as souvenirs. People get them from a place, and keep them.
Methods tested
and Lesson learned:
Contact souvenir providers, asking for photo taking in the factory. Recruiting participants in making sites.
Going to souvenir stores to analysis souvenirs and their placement.Cannot have access to airport's tax free area. Need to think of a replacing method.
Handing out postcards of questionnaire and ask participants to send it back to me. Lesson learned: use plain postcard instead of pictorial ones.
Analysing souvenirs’ home placement based on photos. Use object analysing form to have a systemic analysis.
Recruiting participants via emails/social media

The project was to have a comparison of London souvenirs and Beijing souvenirs, now it is focused on London souvenirs.
The method 'following the thing' is not on following the exact thing, but the thing's route.
Year 2 Plan

Oct 2014 – April 2015 London fieldwork
(transcribing along doing)

April - Aug 2015 China fieldwork
(transcribing along doing)

What is a souvenir?
A souvenir is a thing that is kept as a reminder of a person, place, or event.
Souvenirs studying is an innovative and novel topic area in geographical fields, which promises to contribute to discussions in a range of geographical topics: material culture, place and, in particular, tourism studies.
Full transcript