Journal of Sustainable Tourism
Taylor and Francis
School of Business and Law
The field of event studies has attracted a breadth of research on the triple-bottom line of economic efficiency, environmental integrity and social equity. The focus of many studies related to event tourism, however, has fallen upon the economic and environmental dimensions of events with far less attention on “social equity.” The potential of events tourism to facilitate justice and equity for marginalised and minority groups has been especially overlooked. LGBTQI+ communities utilise gay events, such as pride parades, as mediums to communicate their identities and seek support from broader society. This paper examines a unique festival space where LGBTQI+ communities can resist marginalisation and exclusion, counteract stereotypical images and representations, and reconstitute space to fully embrace their identity and their communities. This study draws on neo-tribal theoretical insights to examine the case of the Broken Heel drag queen festival, held in the rural Australian town of Broken Hill. The study analyses Instagram posts using a netnographic approach to explore the spatiality of this festival and participant practices on the journey and at the festival site. Results points to the importance of LGBTQI+ events such as the Broken Heel festival to counter marginalisation and promote social justice and sociality for LGBTQI+ people through individual and collective expression of emotional connectedness and non-heterosexual identities.
Society and Culture
Creativity, culture and artistic practice