Histories, Meanings and Representations of the Modern Hotel Author: Kevin J. James

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15 Aug 2018
Tourism and Cultural Change
Channel View Publications
210 x 148


This book surveys current writing on the history of the modern hotel, focusing on three areas of vibrant and timely scholarly enquiry: the uniqueness of the American hotel, the contested status of the colonial and postcolonial hotel, and the hotelís embroilment in violent conflict. It explores the hotel as an institution that incubates innovation, enables commercial relations on a variety of scales, and supplies an arena for negotiating relations of political, cultural, and economic power. The volume presents a number of case studies, including the hotel in wartime and as a terrorist target, and critically engages with innovative scholarship that links the relationship of the hotel to wider narratives of Western modernity. It is aimed at tourism studies scholars, as well as history and critical and applied tourism studies students, at undergraduate and graduate levels.


Simply a must for anyone interested in hotels, Kevin James’s engaging historiography of scholarship on the topic is both exemplary in form and extremely valuable for its comprehensiveness. As a result, this book stands as an important and delightful contribution to the unique interdisciplinary dialogue that hotels continue to generate.

- Robert A. Davidson, University of Toronto, Canada

This informative and thought-provoking book is a reminder of the important place occupied by hotels in the history of tourism and how they are a theatre for and window onto wider economic, sociocultural and political processes. The author writes in an accessible and engaging style, providing valuable insights and fascinating stories. The volume should stimulate much-needed further enquiry into the meanings and roles of hotels, past and present.

- Joan C. Henderson, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

Author Biography:

Kevin J. James is a Professor of History at the University of Guelph, Canada. He is the Deputy Editor and Reviews Editor for the Journal of Tourism History and co-editor of the forthcoming The Oxford Handbook of the History of Tourism.

Readership Level:

Postgraduate, Research / Professional, Undergraduate

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