David Picard

PhD, MA, MRes (University of La Réunion, Indian Ocean)
Senior Research Fellow, Universidade Nova de Lisboa
PopAnth Author

Currently living in Lisbon, Portugal, David works at the Centre for Research in Anthropology (CRIA) at New University of Lisbon.

Following his doctoral studies at the University of La Reunion, Indian Ocean, David held work appointments and visiting researcher positions at the Centre for Tourism and Cultural Change (CTCC), Leeds, United Kingdom (2002-2010) the Institute for Development Research (IRD) in Madagascar (2001-2), the University of California at Berkeley in the USA (2006), the Tanzania Ministry for Natural Resources and Tourism (2006), the University of Tuléar in Madagascar (2011) and the University of Queensland in Australia (2012).

David’s first single-authored book, Tourism, Magic and Modernity: Cultivating the Human Garden came out at Berghahn in 2011. Books for which he served as an editor include Tourism and the Power of Otherness (Channel View Publications, 2014), Festivals, Tourism and Social Change (Channel View Publications, 2006), The Framed World: Tourism, Tourists and Photography (Ashgate, 2009) and Emotion in Motion: Tourism, Affect and Transformation (Ashgate, 2012).


Drawing from extended fieldwork in La Réunion, in the Indian Ocean, the author suggests an innovative re-reading of different concepts of magic that emerge in the global cultural economics of tourism. Following the making and unmaking of the tropical island tourism destination of La Réunion, he demonstrates how destinations are transformed into magical pleasure gardens in which human life …

What happens when tourists scream with fear, shout with anger and frustration, weep with joy and delight, or even faint in the face of revealed beauty? How can certain sites affect some tourists so deeply that they require hospitalisation and psychiatric treatment? What are the inner contours of tourist experience and how does it relate to specific emotional cultures? What are the consequences of …

This book explores the links between tourism and festivals and the various ways in which each mobilises the other to make social realities meaningful. Drawing upon a series of international cases, festivals are examined as ways of responding to various forms of crisis - social, political, economic - and as a way of re-making and re-animating spaces and social life. Importantly, this book locates …

Photographs create visual narratives of experiences, places, peoples and objects that collectively and individually comprise the tourist gaze. Photography is acknowledged as having an important role in the determining of places and spaces, the construction and re-construction of identities, and the invention and re-invention of histories. So why do tourists take photos of certain things and not …

The book provides unique insights into the culture of computer-mediated hospitality and how this has begun to transform contemporary tourism and travel practice. Focusing on Couchsurfing.org, one of the largest online hospitality communities worldwide, the authors explore how social relations, intimacy and trust are built in the online environment and then extended into the offline contexts of …

This book explores the paradoxes of Self–Other relations in the field of tourism. It particularly focuses on the 'power' of different forms of 'Otherness' to seduce and to disrupt, and, eventually, also to renew the social and cosmological orders of 'modern' culture and everyday life. Drawing on a series of ethnographic case studies, the contributors investigate the production, socialisation …

PopAnth Articles

When tourists want to kill

When tourists want to kill

Tourism can be traumatic, the beauty of the landscape prompting extreme emotional responses. Reflections from the edge of a volcanic crater in the Indian Ocean.Read on »

Chasing one's inner South Pole

Chasing one's inner South Pole

Traveling to Antarctica necessitates a long journey, is expensive, offers relatively little comfort, exposes tourists to extreme weather, and often causes actual body pain. So why do tourists flock there?Read on »

Can couchsurfing make a better world?

Can couchsurfing make a better world?

Why would people let complete strangers stay at their houses, often leaving them with the keys and not charging them a penny? Couchsurfing teases us with the promise of a world based on kindness, trust, friendliness, and grilled sardines.Read on »