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Title: Cultural Capital as Access to Livelihood Opportunities for Local People at Destinations, and Effect of Changes in Cultural Practice: A Case Study in South Omo Zone, Ethiopia
Authors: Girmai, Azeb
Keywords: Tourism
Cultural capital
Livelihood opportunities
Photo for cash
Issue Date: Mar-2020
Publisher: The Center for African Area Studies, Kyoto University
Journal title: African Study Monographs. Supplementary Issue.
Volume: 59
Start page: 105
End page: 122
Abstract: The objectives of this paper are to understand the Mursi people's perspectives on the significance of cultural tourism on their livelihood and wellbeing, and identify assets and drivers that determine Mursi engagement in tourism activities. The data for this case study methodology was gathered through in-depth interview, focus group discussion, unstructured interviews, and participator observation. Findings show that the Mursi people at tourist destination have taken opportunity of their cultural identity as an asset to diversify their livelihood. Photo for cash, a transaction of cash for photo taken by tourists, is providing indispensable income to purchase grain in times of poor harvest without having to sell their livestock. Photo for cash also provides women with a source of income. While tourism is considered beneficial by the Mursi people, a benefit valuation exercise reveals that the economic benefits of tourism falls below the local peoples' aspired state of wellbeing. A recent change in cultural practice, girls abandoning lip cutting, causes villages to lose opportunities to tourism-based income. In conclusion, this study shows that cultural tourism provides the Mursi people with a source of income that offsets the effects of poor harvest, however, the amount earned does not meet their aspired state of wellbeing.
Description: PART II Local Knowledge and Livelihoods
Rights: Copyright by The Center for African Area Studies, Kyoto University, March 1, 2020.
DOI: 10.14989/250121
Appears in Collections:59(Reconsidering Local Knowledge and Beyond)

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