A Shifting Shore

Locals, Outsiders, and the Transformation of a French Fishing Town, 1823-2000

  • Engels
  • 9780801442827
  • december 2004
  • Hardcover
  • 304 pagina's
Alle productspecificaties


How does tourism transform fishing communities into vibrant resorts, working shores into bathing beaches? In A Shifting Shore, Alice Garner traces the ways fisherfolk, bathers, investors, and engineers understood, claimed, and remade the shores of the Bassin d'Arcachon, a prime fishing and oyster-farming site in southwestern France, over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Garner's interest in the coastline-a zone that resists all attempts at definition-shapes this generously illustrated book. Rather than taking a straightforward chronological approach to the settlement and evolution of the towns of Arcachon and La Teste, Garner investigates the development of the Bassin d'Arcachon's southern shores with the aim of recovering something of the lived space experienced by locals and visitors. Drawing on guidebooks, newspapers, bylaws, engineers' reports, medical pamphlets, postcards, and the accounts of literary-minded holidaymakers, Garner shows how investors and developers transformed Arcachon and its community-beaches were rezoned and jetties constructed to favor bathers, and a new railway line brought ever-increasing numbers of visitors to the area. Exploring how fishermen and women resisted developments that threatened their livelihood or their particular sense of belonging, she also shows how they adapted to the changing environment and to their new roles as guides and entertainers. A Shifting Shore, while anchored in Arcachon and La Teste, has much to contribute to a nuanced understanding of relations between hosts and guests in any community.


This meticulously researched and well-written book joins a growing genre that charts the deep history of leisure activities and tourism. A Shifting Shore will be of great interest to environmental historians seeking to evaluate the constraints nature places on the fondest hopes of developers, the human conflicts generated by the transmutation of space, and the policies of governments that promote 'progress.' Alice Garner provides a classic account undoubtedly replicated in virtually all tourist areas, where people on each side-locals and outsiders-realize that they can't live with or without the others. Garner's discussion of postcards is a delightful excursion into the realm of visual representations, for here are the locals doing their things and there are the holidaymakers doing theirs, especially on the beach among their umbrellas. -- Christopher H. Johnson, Wayne State University A Shifting Shore is an engaging and persuasive account of the historical transformation of the southern shore of the Bassin d'Arcachon from a fishing community to a popular seaside resort. We learn how the cultural values, social practices, and individual actions of developers, engineers, men and women within the local fishing community, and tourists variously shaped and contested the meanings and uses of this particular locale. The result is a remarkable book, enlivened by splendid prose, that conveys a rich and textured history of Arcachon as 'lived space' while remaining acutely aware of the influence of forces of change and continuity occurring elsewhere in France. -- Ellen Furlough, University of Kentucky Recent research in tourism studies has generated more convincing comparative understandings of the changing nature of resort destinations and processes at work in periods of transition, but the distinctive contribution of historians, as in Alice Garner's elegant, evocative, and nuanced study of the local and external influences on the French resort of Arcachon in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, A Shifting Shore, still shed indispensable additional light. -- John K. Walton * The Sage Handbook of Tourism Studies * A fascinating contribution to tourism studies. This careful examination of the transformation of one fishing community into a beach resort provides an empirically well-grounded basis for fruitful comparisons about the history and dynamics of European tourism. -- Susan Carol Rogers * Journal of Modern History *



december 2004
Aantal pagina's
304 pagina's
Aanbevolen leeftijd
22 jaar
Met illustraties


Alice Garner
Cornell University Press



Overige kenmerken

illustrated edition
Extra groot lettertype
Locals, Outsiders, and the Transformation of a French Fishing Town, 1823-2000

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