Toraja people of Sulawesi, Indonesia

Among the Toraja people of Sulawesi, Indonesia, not all was going well with tourism. In fact, resentment became so great over the way in which sacred funeral ceremonies were being adapted to meet tourists’ needs that in the late 1980s, a number of Toraja communities simply refused to accept tourists. The result is that host communities find culture and traditions under threat from the purchasing power of the tourism industry. Neither are tourists better off from the cultural viewpoint. Instead of getting rich and authentic cultural insights and experiences, tourists get staged authenticity; instead of getting exotic culture, they get kitsch. Question: Within the context of the narrative presented above, discuss 4 cultural differences (Scollon and Scollon, 1995) that may have prompted the Toraja communities to resist the threats posed by tourism.

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