Total change ?

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Consumption of a place by tourists and natives: street scene in Copenhagen

An almost totally commodified place: the pool on a cruise ship

While there is no denying that many places today have become commodified, it does not follow that their entire being is taken up in their commodity role. Being-a-tourist-town does not exhaust the town as a place. Most towns do not become Colonial Williamsburg -- and Colonial Williamsburg is only a part of its town, which has other economic and institutional resources, such as William and Mary College.

Commodification is only one aspect of a place that may in fact be made more complex by that very process. For its inhabitants the place may become more complex because the norms and patterns of tourism are added on to those lives. Even for the tourist the place is not as simple as it might seem, since precisely because tourists do consume it, the place is inserted into the circulations of their lives with their own contrasts and goals.