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Spas (Hardback)

The Cultural Economy of Hospitality, Magic & the Senses

P&S History > Social Science & Culture

Imprint: Nordic Academic Press
Pages: 160
Illustrations: colour & b/w illus
ISBN: 9789185509355
Published: 7th June 2010
Casemate UK Academic

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Recent years have seen a rapidly growing hotel business built around health and well-being. Leisurely experiences are packaged, staged and consumed as commercial commodities - the tourist complexes have become part of the so called "cultural economy". In the book, ethnologist Tom O'Dell uses spas to highlight the manner in which the culturalisation of the economy has developed. The author takes his readers on a journey from the seventeenth century into the present and shows how issues of hospitality, well-being and religious magic have been handled in commercialised settings through history. He also anchors his discussion firmly in a cultural analysis of the body and senses that draws upon recent work in cultural theory that has been developed in the humanities and social sciences.

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