Are we all in this together? Gender intersectionality and sustainable tourism

Donna Chambers*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper I provide a critical discussion of gender intersectionality and its relevance for sustainability in tourism, focusing on the intersection between gender and race. I argue that Black women in tourism suffer from a double negation caused by both sexism and racism, but this has received little acknowledgement or critical discussion in studies of sustainable tourism. However, an intersectional approach to gender is vital as it rejects reductionist views of women’s experiences in tourism and the attendant power relationships that such an approach (re)produces. I argue that it is through a critical understanding of the importance of an intersectional approach to gender that we can move closer to achieving equity in the development of tourism. My discussion is theoretically underpinned by critical race theory (CRT) and the related logics of Black feminism which I use to highlight the (re)presentation of Black women in tourism. Methodologically I draw on the storytelling technique popularised in CRT to analyse a fictional film – ‘Heading South’, to explore Black women’s elision as agentic beings as well as their (re)presentation as vulnerable and submissive. I argue that such (re)presentations of Black women in tourism popular cultural narratives have material implications for sustainable development.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1586-1601
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Sustainable Tourism
Issue number7
Early online date29 Mar 2021
Publication statusPublished - 20 Oct 2021
Externally publishedYes


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