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From Tourist to Traveller: Discourses of Authenticity and Self-Transformation in Television Travel Genres

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posted on 2021-11-11, 21:08 authored by Sugandi, Kania

Tourism and travel programmes, in the form of direct advertorials, travel and adventure shows, and reality television series set in exotic locations, now constitute a significant set of media forms, genres and sub-genres. This is clearly in line with recent and contemporary increases in the number of people travelling, facilitated by sophisticated transportation infrastructure, inexpensive airfares and an increased exposure, through the media, of what is on offer to the tourist/traveller. Considerable study has been done on the field of travel and tourism in order to ascertain what motivates people to travel; the nature of the interaction between the visitor and the visited; and how cultures are impacted by the introduction of tourism in the area. However, it is curious that, given its abundance and popularity, there is a noticeable absence of academic literature on television travel programmes and genres. Travel programmes give viewers a window onto travel destinations both within their own countries and, more commonly, around the world. Within the genre of travel programmes, there exists a wide variety of types and sub-genres, usually with an emphasis on tourism, adventure, and culture and heritage. Those differences aside, most travel programmes inform viewers (that is, either potential travellers or so-called ‘armchair travellers’) about what is available to see and do in, and generally what to expect from, a place, its people and its culture. Travel programmes act as advertisements for both destinations and the act of travelling itself. Three travel programmes will be analysed in this thesis: Sahara with Michael Palin, Long Way Down, and Intrepid Journeys. ...


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Media Studies

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Arts

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

School of English, Film, Theatre and Media Studies


Schirato, Tony; de Bruin, Joost