The making of the London Notting Hill Carnival festivalscape: politics and power and the Notting Hill Carnival

N. Ferdinand, Nigel Williams

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Abstract

This paper examines the role of politics and power in the Notting Hill Carnival's evolution from a community festival to a hallmark event and tourism product. It overcomes the limitations of previous event/festival tourism research by utilizing Actor Network Theory's conceptualization of power as an evolving, relational and transformational phenomenon to analyse the development of the Notting Hill Carnival's festivalscape. Findings reveal over its fifty-plus-year history, non-human actors (such as, money) and human actors (such as, organizing committees) have engaged in continuous, complex ordering processes that have led to the development of six distinct festival frames – Community Festival, Trinidad Carnival, Caribbean Carnival, Black Arts Festival, Business Opportunity and City-led Hallmark Festival. These changes have taken place within a festivalscape that includes objects, space, the translation process, pivotal events and dissenting actors. Within the festivalscape, political actors have exerted significant influence due to their asymmetrical power creating challenges for festival organizers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-46
Number of pages14
JournalTourism Management Perspectives
Volume27
Early online date25 Apr 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018

Keywords

  • actor network theory
  • festival
  • festivalscape
  • Notting Hill Carnival
  • politics
  • power
  • stakeholders

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