Holiday Romances: Liquid Lust and the ‘Package Holiday’

  • Chris Haywood


Since the emergence of mass tourism, holidays have been a leisure activity that have increasingly been associated with dating and romance. One of the characteristics of mass tourism is its associations with pleasure and the view that it is a time when the formal and informal rules that regulate behaviour at ‘home’ have little purchase in ‘foreign’ contexts. This chapter explores young men and their experiences of initiating relationships whilst on holiday. Drawing on semi-structured interviews with 12 young people aged 18–27, it explores issues of homosociality, desire and fear. It begins with a discussion of holidays and masculinities, highlighting how most literature in the field tends to posit masculinities as patriarchal, especially in the field of sex tourism. This chapter suggests that men, masculinities and holidays are more complex. More specifically, the liminal experience of the holiday creates a tension between disinhibition and relationship acceleration. This tension not only creates traditional ‘laddish’ behaviours but also has the potential to produce alternative forms of masculinity. It concludes by suggesting that we need to move away from simplistically equating men, masculinity and holidays as a space for sexual conquest and see them also as a space for the men to experience shame and vulnerability and the emergence of more progressive masculinities.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chris Haywood
    • 1
  1. 1.Media, Culture and HeritageNewcastle UniversityNewcastle-upon-TyneUK

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