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Renovating the Landscape and Packaging the Penguin: Culture and Nature on Summerland Peninsula, Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia

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Changes in settler impacts on Summerland Peninsula, Phillip Island are examined, with an emphasis on the recent program of environmental restoration associated with the Penguin Parade, one of Victoria’s largest tourist attractions. Management strategies construct nature around an ideal of human absence, expressed in, for example, removal of residents and residential buildings; representations of the Aboriginal presence as both prehistoric and part of nature; and formalised rather than experiential environmental education. Paradoxically this encourages intensified tourism and its associated impacts, such that the economics of environmental preservation are dependent on its commodification. This paper draws on two traditions of cultural geography, with components undertaken more than 20 years apart. I argue that a combination of Sauerian and deconstructive approaches can be productively applied to many current environmental issues.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: The University of Wollongong, Wollongong, NSW 2522, Australia

Publication date: 01 March 2000

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