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Wallace takes a pessimistic view on tourism, in which he decides that not only does tourism destroy all the attractive features of the location, but also does not actually have any of the enlightening or mind-enhancing features that people claim it has. Instead, by people flocking to say, lobster festivals or tropical islands by way of cruise ship, the act of tourism is in fact a constricting force on the soul, and stymies any attempts at real thought or individuality. The whole experience, for Wallace, is not only a futile exercise but a harmful one at that.

This claim is quite strong, so this theme should be approached with a critical eye (like all the others) when reading Wallace's work.

Occurrences in Wallace's work