Sombreros and Motorcycles: Place Studies on Tourism and Identity in Modern South Carolina
King, Paula Nicole
Sies, Mary C
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This dissertation examines the rise of tourism as an important social and economic force in the U.S. South through place studies of tourist sites in South Carolina. The roadside attraction South of the Border and the historically black town of Atlantic Beach are analyzed as touriscapes that provide historical narratives foregrounding the connections between place and southern identity in the modern era. Touriscapes are defined as places where perspectives overlap and identities intersect to produce spaces of serious cultural and historical significance as well as recreation and fun. Both of these touriscapes were enacted as tourism developed and Jim Crow segregation began to crumble, and they have survived into the twenty-first century. They are sites of commercial development, resistance, and political strife that should be studied, engaged, and preserved for future generations to better understand the complexity of southern history, culture, and identity.