Presentation Title

The Commodification of Rural Landscapes for Resort Communities: A Study of Capital Interests versus Socio-environmental Interests

Format of Presentation

Poster to be presented Friday March 31, 2017

Abstract

The commodification of rural areas to create resort communities is a worldwide occurrence, as we capitalize on people that are seeking an escape from their daily lives. Through literary reviews and case studies, I explore and contrast the commodification and development of the Japanese-owned Tod Mountain and the locally-owned Harper Mountain within the Thompson-Nicola Regional District in British Columbia. From a Marxist perspective, I compare the two ski hills to the proposed Jumbo Glacier Resort in the Kootenays and the Melvin Creek Ski Resort in the Cascade region of British Columbia by outlining the impacts of the power struggle between high-level capital interests and low-level socio-environmental interests. The preliminary results show that there are sociologically different senses of place and differing interpretations of nature from person to person, often leading to political conflict and social unrest; however, there are instances where unity can be achieved between those involved. The main conclusion from this research is that, although there are differing outlooks towards the natural environment, successful rural development can be achieved with a stronger voice from the local level.

Department

Geography and Environmental Studies

Faculty Advisor

Tom Waldichuk

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The Commodification of Rural Landscapes for Resort Communities: A Study of Capital Interests versus Socio-environmental Interests

The commodification of rural areas to create resort communities is a worldwide occurrence, as we capitalize on people that are seeking an escape from their daily lives. Through literary reviews and case studies, I explore and contrast the commodification and development of the Japanese-owned Tod Mountain and the locally-owned Harper Mountain within the Thompson-Nicola Regional District in British Columbia. From a Marxist perspective, I compare the two ski hills to the proposed Jumbo Glacier Resort in the Kootenays and the Melvin Creek Ski Resort in the Cascade region of British Columbia by outlining the impacts of the power struggle between high-level capital interests and low-level socio-environmental interests. The preliminary results show that there are sociologically different senses of place and differing interpretations of nature from person to person, often leading to political conflict and social unrest; however, there are instances where unity can be achieved between those involved. The main conclusion from this research is that, although there are differing outlooks towards the natural environment, successful rural development can be achieved with a stronger voice from the local level.