A History of Caribbean Tourism
Blake C. Scott
Unpacked offers a critical, novel perspective on the Caribbean's now taken-for-granted desirability as a tourist's paradise. Dreams of a tropical vacation have become a quintessential aspect of the modern Caribbean, as millions of tourists travel to the region and spend extravagantly to pursue vacation fantasies. At the beginning of the twentieth century, however, travelers from North America and Europe thought of the Caribbean as diseased, dangerous, and, according to many observers, "the white man's graveyard." How then did a trip to the Caribbean become a supposedly fun and safe experience?
Unpacked examines the historical roots of the region's tourism industry by following a well-traveled sea route linking the US East Coast with the island of Cuba and the Isthmus of Panama. Blake C. Scott describes how the cultural and material history of US imperialism became the heart of modern Caribbean tourism. In addition, he explores how advances in tropical medicine, perceptions of the tropical environment, and development of infrastructure and transportation networks opened a new playground for visitors.