Authentication in sports tourism

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Publication details

Lamont, M 2014, 'Authentication in sports tourism', Annals of Tourism Research, vol. 45, pp. 1-17.

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Social processes ascribing authenticity to touristic phenomena is an area of tourism theory lacking empirical insights. This paper addresses the French Alps as a historically significant landscape for the Tour de France and presents an empirical exploration of Cohen and Cohen’s (2012) theoretical framework of authentication in tourism. Using the context of a commercially organized tour, social practices of sports tourists which reinforced and amplified the status of the French Alps as authentic “Tour space” are analyzed. Embodied cycling excursions combined with collective, participatory roadside practices constituted performative acts of authentication, whilst mediation of encounters with places of sporting significance highlighted authentication as a cyclical process.