The shared oasis: an insider ethnographic account of a gay resort

Oskaras Vorobjovas-Pinta, Brady Robards

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The literature pertaining to critical tourism studies has sought to challenge the traditional scientific dichotomy between the detached researcher and research participant in the production of tourism knowledge. This article argues for the value of an ethnographic approach in further challenging that dichotomy, by way of a study seeking to better understand a specific culture in tourism: gay resorts. We aim to outline the methodological component of this research project, centred on a gay resort in Australia, and to argue for the value of ethnography in understanding other specific tourism cultures. Often a researcher’s proximity to and pronounced familiarity with a topic is obfuscated in service of ‘non-biased’ and ‘value-neutral’ results, but in this article, we attend closely to the value of insider research in critical tourism studies. The experiences reported here – around insider perspectives, rapport building, in-depth interviews, participant observations, becoming embedded in a research environment and respecting participants – are argued to have much wider currency.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)369-387
Number of pages19
JournalTourist Studies
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • critical studies
  • ethnography
  • gay resort
  • gay tourism
  • insider approach
  • reflexivity

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