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Ways of Seeing, Ways of Being

Representing the Voices of Tourism

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Edited By Maurizio Gotti, Stefania Maci and Michele Sala

The aim of this volume is to give voice to the various and different perspectives in the investigation of tourism discourse in its written, spoken, and visual aspects. The chapters particularly focus on the interaction between the participants involved in the tourism practices, that is the promoters of tourist destinations, on the one hand, and tourists or prospective tourists on the other. In this dialogic interaction, tourism discourse, while representing and producing tourism as a global cultural industry, shows it to be on the move. Language movement in the tourism experience is here highlighted in the various methodological approaches and viewpoints offered by the investigations gathered in this volume.

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Conveying a Destination Image: A Case Study of Rome (Judith Turnbull)

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JUDITH TURNBULL

Conveying a Destination Image: A Case Study of Rome

1.   Introduction

Destination image is one of the most widely explored fields in tourism research because of its fundamental role in the tourist’s selection and evaluation of a holiday destination. As a consequence, understanding how the image is formed is essential for effective promotion in the marketplace (San Martin/del Bosque 2008). A destination image is created by a combination of information collected by potential tourists from a variety of sources – both external informants (the media, tour operators and travel agencies) and social stimuli (friends and relatives’ recommendations, word of mouth and nowadays the Internet and its various types of applications). It may be viewed as its reflection in the eyes of potential, actual or past tourists, “the sum of beliefs, ideas and impressions that a tourist has of a destination” (Crompton 1979: 18). It is, therefore, a composite image formed by taking into consideration different dimensions and attributes of a location. Beerli and Martin (2004) listed nine such dimensions, namely natural resources, general infrastructures, tourist infrastructure, tourist leisure and recreation, culture, history and art, political and economic factors, natural environment, social environment, and atmosphere of the place. Given the complexity of the formation of a destination image, language will, undoubtedly, play a fundamental role in creating and conveying its various elements. This study, therefore, aims to see how language helps to shape a destination image.

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