Backpacking through an ontology of becoming: a never‐ending cycle of journeys

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    By adopting an ontological stance of becoming, this study traces qualitatively the journeys of contemporary backpacker tourists using the theoretical construct of the 'Hero's Journey' as a conceptual vehicle. This process allows for the development of a cyclical model of experience that illustrates the backpacker's experience in three stages of departure, initiation and return. This approach reveals the role that former backpackers play through the sharing of knowledge and the invaluable support they offer to novice backpackers through a network of support that is available to contemporary backpackers who choose to follow established backpacking trails. This never ending cycle of journeys becomes instrumental into the shaping of what this paper see as the common, collective consciousness of the backpacking experience and the evolution of the backpacking experience market.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number18 (2)
    Pages (from-to)140-148
    Number of pages8
    JournalInternational Journal of Tourism Research
    Early online date7 Apr 2015
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2016


    • backpacking
    • journey
    • cycle
    • transformation


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