Bali and the Tourist Industry

A History, 1906–1942


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About the Book

The island of Bali’s sensational image was created by the tourists, artists, and scholars who visited the tiny nation between the two world wars. A Dutch colony from 1908, Bali was a source of revenue for the Dutch government, which began to develop its image as the ultimate vacation spot. The tourism industry spread the idea of Bali as a paradise in which noble, happy, spiritual Balinese—all prodigiously creative artists—lived in innocence. Sensual images of beautiful people on an enchanted isle unspoiled by modernity predominated. Bali also acquired a reputation as a homosexual paradise. A host of books and articles fed these images of Bali until it evolved into one of the most romantic stops on the tourist itinerary. The Balinese people, however, made little profit from the tourist traffic.
This history of the development of tourism in Bali stretches from the Dutch occupation in 1906 to the Japanese occupation in 1942. After exhaustive research in published records and in unpublished letters, diaries, and oral histories left by many of the American and European visitors to the island as well as the Balinese residents, the author explores the reasons for Bali’s popularity among Westerners and their effects on the native culture.

About the Author(s)

David Shavit is professor emeritus of library and information studies at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb. He is the author, among other books, of The United States in Asia: A Historical Dictionary. He lives in DeKalb.

Bibliographic Details

David Shavit
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 221
Bibliographic Info: photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2003
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1572-4
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1096-2
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      v

Preface      1

Introduction      3

1. The Puputans      5

2. A New Vision of Paradise      14

3. Paradise Gained      22

4. Dolce-Far-Niente      49

5. “Saint” Walter      73

6. Last Paradise      83

7. Goona-Goona      101

8. Living Treasure      107

9. Imaginary Museum      119

10. Oh, Noble Breasts of Bali      132

11. Little Grass Shacks on the Beach of Bali      135

12. The Last Garden of Eden      146

13. Belated Gauguins      165

14. The Dark Side of Paradise      174

15. Witch Hunt      180

16. Paradise Lost      183

Chapter Notes      193

Bibliography      201

Index      211