Music and (Touristic) Meaning on Cruise Ships: The Musicscape of the MV Carnival Paradise as a Semiotic Tourism Product.


  • David Cashman Central Queensland University



popular music, meaning, semiosis, cruise tourism, post-tourism


The cruise industry is a part of the ‘post-tourism’ sector that, in contrast to cultural tourism, does not seek to represent culture for consumption by the tourist, but fabricates it, creating a hyperreal tourist experience. The music is a core aspect of the cruise experience. This paper investigates the music performed on a 2009 cruise of the MV Carnival Paradise and considers how touristic meaning (as opposed to inherent meaning) is infused in the music. It finds that the music of cruise ships is used to construct a cultural cocoon which mediates and protects guests from interaction with the cultures through which they travel. It turns attention inwards, constructing the fabricated geography and culture of the ship as the destination. In so doing, it encourages consumption on the ship itself and thereby contributes to the overall profitability of the ship.

Author Biography

David Cashman, Central Queensland University

Senior Lecturer School of Education and the Arts Central Queensland University


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