Project Proposal

Project Title

Travel Blogging: A Study in Tourism and Identity

Email and URL for Project

Executive Description

Because I am curious about and enjoy traveling, I will be studying a variety of travel blogs for explicit and implicit reflections on identity as a tourist; to further my understanding on the topic, I will study the blogs within the lens of scholarly articles and outside sources. My findings will be presented on my blog because I hope others, specifically the travel bloggers I examine, will find and interact with my posts.


In this project I will be examining what different travel blogs reveal about being a tourist while maintaining identity or, conversely, while changing identity. I am interested in how travel affects individual identity and how being in a different country can change an individual's perception of themselves and their own culture. I think using blogs as a platform -- both my own platform and as a platform for examination -- will allow me to learn more about the thoughts of travel bloggers and also allow me to connect with the travel blogging community. I enjoy reading travel blogs and traveling, so I am interested in the chance to examine them from a scholarly perspective and learn more about how traveling could be affecting my perception of self.

I was inspired to begin this project after I wrote my blog post Travel Blogging as Literature in which I examined and wrote about Matt Long's travel blog, Land Lopers. This first examination into travel blogging piqued my interest and made me begin thinking about travel blogging as an art and what travel bloggers, as artists, experience through their art. This led me to thoughts on identity as tourist and wanting to explore the topic further.

I will be blogging at least 4 times a week. Each week will begin with a thorough analysis and reflection on at least one outside source (e.g. videos, podcasts, news articles) or scholarly article about travel blogging, identity, and tourism. In the following two posts of the week, I will feature two different travel blogs, of which I will examine at least two of the blogger's posts on traveling. I will examine these travel blogs and posts using the lens of what I have learned from scholarly articles or outside sources, either from that week or previous weeks. This will be clarified by extensive linking to materials that I have referenced throughout the duration of my project. My last post of each week will be a weekly reflection. My introductory post will include my pre-research observations as I travel to Georgia for a spring break trip; this will allow me to put self identity and perception into a better perspective before beginning the majority of my project.

I will begin my project by researching for scholarly articles and outside sources to supplement my first posts of each week. I will do my best to find variety in sources and perspectives on the topic. Next, I will begin searching for travel blogs that include a variety of visited locations. I want my project to feature many different locales to round out my research and show how different cities and countries can change the perspective of the blogger.

I will organize my blog into different categories to easily access the types of posts I will be writing; for example, "Travel Blogging: Analyses" for my analyses and reflections on outside sources; "Featured Travel Blogs" for posts on other travel blogs I examine; and continuing use of my "Weekly Reflections" category for my weekly reflections. I will also use many tags to hopefully incite conversation on my topic with other bloggers.

For my project report, I will write an in-depth reflective essay on my blog with necessary linkages to summarize what I have learned throughout my project, what I think it means for the future of travel blogging, and how what I've learned affects my perception of self as traveler. I will be traveling to the Baltics with the Bemidji Choir shortly after the project report is due, so I will specifically discuss how what I have learned will change my upcoming traveling experience.

Weekly Reports

My weekly reports will be posted to my blog, Distinctively Dani.

Contract for Grade

My contract will be for 250 points. I will be blogging 4 times a week. My weekly reflections will be 500 - 1,000 words and posted on Mondays. All other posts will be 500 - 750 words and posted throughout each week before each reflection is posted. My project report will be over 1,000 words. I will include multiple internal and external links in all of my posts.
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