To read this content please select one of the options below:

The dilemma between cultural rituals and hedonism for tourism in a cultural festival: a case study of the Lanna Songkran festival in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Montira Intason (Department of Tourism, Naresuan University, Phitsanulok, Thailand)

International Journal of Event and Festival Management

ISSN: 1758-2954

Article publication date: 31 October 2023

116

Abstract

Purpose

The qualitative approach was applied the discover the optimum answers to the research objectives, which are (1) to understand the cultural and hedonistic characteristics of the (Lanna) Songkran festival; and (2) to examine the dilemma between cultural rituals and hedonistic activity for tourism.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used a case study of the Songkran festival in Chiang Mai to examine the dilemma between cultural rituals and hedonism for tourism, which brings lost or misperceived cultural values and identities. The semi-structured interview (SSI) with senior locals and participant observation during the festival was conducted in Chiang Mai, Thailand, to obtain the in-depth phenomena of the existing celebration pattern at the festival.

Findings

The study findings show three crucial phenomena that explain characteristics of unsynchronized cultural rituals and hedonistic activities for tourism: (1) the parallel phenomenon between cultural values and celebration practice, (2) the movement of local culture and(3) the hedonistic characteristics of the festival.

Practical implications

The study extends the knowledge on the interplay phenomena between cultural festivals and tourism; also, the involved stakeholders, such as local communities, public sectors and private sectors, can use the study findings in creating policies for using cultural festivals to promote a destination and urban economic development that will minimise cultural values distort while increase tourism economic values.

Originality/value

This study was conducted qualitatively, including SSIs and participant observation at the Songkran festival in Chiang Mai. The study findings were analysed, based on the empirical data, into significant themes representing the characteristics of dilemma phenomena within the festival.

Keywords

Citation

Intason, M. (2023), "The dilemma between cultural rituals and hedonism for tourism in a cultural festival: a case study of the Lanna Songkran festival in Chiang Mai, Thailand", International Journal of Event and Festival Management, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJEFM-03-2023-0027

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles