Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Lily Geismer

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© 2017 Amber M. Scott


I have attempted to denaturalize and historicize tourism in Crested Butte as an economic, social, and physical phenomenon that fits into the broader histories of Colorado and the West, as well as the broader histories and realities of travel and tourism. Why do people seek out certain places and experiences in the name of pleasure? How did these activities and spaces come to qualify as desirable? What about people who fall outside temporally limited definitions of tourist, such as those who come to Crested Butte for only a season or a year, or second homeowners who stay for months at a time, or, really, any resident? All these people value the place and their experiences in the exact same ways, influenced by the same physical and psychic constructions of desirability. These current constructions are informed by a long history of evolving tastes and interests, the products of converging local, national, and international dynamics. In tracing a history of tourism and especially tourism in the West, I used a variety of secondary sources authored by scholars of tourism, the West, and Colorado. In charting a history of Crested Butte, I utilized archived local newspapers. I spoke to a number of current Crested Butte residents to understand how Crested Butte locals view themselves, their community, their lifestyles, and their town.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.