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ERIC Number: EJ878391
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1085-4568
"The Pursuit of Exotica:" A Comment
Shubert, Adrian
Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, v15 p197-201 Fall-Win 2007-2008
Michael Woolf's article, "Come and See the Poor People: The Pursuit of Exotica," is a provocative critique of what he calls the "new orthodoxy" of promoting study abroad in non-traditional destinations. Woolf's underlying point is that the current emphasis on promoting student mobility to non-traditional, i.e. non-European, destinations "is neither entirely realistic nor wholly desirable." Among the problems he identifies are the prevalent use of the language of tourism; the self-engaged nature of student responses; and the downgrading of "the inherent seriousness of international education." Underlying all this is the absence of an academic agenda to drive the movement. Woolf is also critical of arguments in favor of non-traditional destinations that highlight national security considerations, and he raises the interesting issue of the resource and academic implications of sending large numbers of US students to universities in these countries. He concludes by arguing that for the promotion of study abroad to non-traditional destinations to be legitimate it must "be driven by a combination of curriculum development on US campuses with an investment in building infrastructure in universities in those regions." The author could not agree more with this conclusion. He also agrees with some of Woolf's more specific arguments, but there are a number of points of Woolf's analysis which could, perhaps, be more complete. This comment will take up some of these issues. It is intended as a friendly and supportive comment on Woolf's timely and thought-provoking article as well as a broadening and sharpening of his critique. (Contains 6 notes.)
Frontiers Journal. Dickinson College P.O. Box 1773, Carlisle, PA 17013. Tel: 717-254-8858; Fax: 717-245-1677; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A