At the resort: south-east Asian tourist workers and regimes of global citizenship
ABSTRACT International five-star tourist resorts are arguably a distinctive cultural site that can reveal much about the logics of globalisation. The Malaysian resort that is the subject of this essay is a multi-layered cultural site that seeks to evoke an imagined memory of colonial idyll and local authenticity. It is at the same time a site of complex regimes of global citizenship. Both guests and workers, it turns out, are members of a mobile, transnational cosmopolitan class. But they do not enjoy the same privileges of citizenship. Such resorts evidence a growing international system of multi-tiered regimes of global citizenship in a climate where states have become adept at managing the interfaces between local and global, modern and pre-modern, marketised and planned, indigenous and immigrant, having developed a new politics of race, nationalism, and belonging that adapts to the contingencies of global flows in ways that far exceed the generic routines of globalisation theory and especially its expectations about national decline.
KEY WORDS: globalisation; transnationalism; citizenship; sovereignty
Associate Professor Mark Davis is the Director of the Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Melbourne.