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Title: A Breath of Fresh Air: Institutional Barriers and Accessibility in American National Parks
Authors: Leonard, Curtis
Advisors: Borneman, John
Department: Anthropology
Class Year: 2020
Abstract: Why are some people drawn to National Parks for recreation, while others are incredibly daunted and deterred by the prospect of outdooring culture? Demographic data from the National Park Service reveals that a disproportionate number of visitors to National Parks are white. This thesis will explore the history behind the creation of National Parks and their connection to the state, ultimately leading into the existence of state-sanctioned wilderness. In highlighting this novel liminal space, this thesis will place geographic and cultural borders in context with one another to better understand how the great outdoors fails to be a great equalizer. Additionally, this thesis will examine a number of social theories that exist justifying why National Parks and outdooring culture are predominantly inaccessible to people of color. While the wilderness is full of untapped resources for personal growth and group development, it is crucial that advocates and organizations recognize the importance to intentionally considering identity and accessibility in these outdoor spaces.
Type of Material: Princeton University Senior Theses
Language: en
Appears in Collections:Anthropology, 1961-2020

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