A journey to the authentic: Museum visitors and their negotiation of the inauthentic

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Hede, Anne-Marie and Thyne, Maree (2010) A journey to the authentic: Museum visitors and their negotiation of the inauthentic. Journal of Marketing Management, 26 (7-8). pp. 686-705. ISSN 0267-257X (print) 1472-1376 (online)


This qualitative research was set within a literary heritage museum replete with replica artefacts. We explored how the inauthentic is negotiated in this context and examined the outcomes of these negotiations. Our research revealed that scene setting, freedom, and imagination contribute to visitors' potential to overcome the absence of indexically authentic artefacts, and we identified a role for existential authenticity in this process. We make three key contributions to marketing theory on authenticity: (1) when visitors are confronted with the inauthentic, they often experience feelings of dissonance; (2) there is a need to consider the role of authenticity of the ‘self’ in consumption situations; and (3) there is a symbiotic relationship between indexical authenticity and iconic authenticity, and both are related to existential authenticity. We recommend that the arts and heritage sectors delve further into the processes that suppliers and consumers use to negotiate the inauthentic so that they may leverage the support they have from stakeholders and enhance their viability.

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Item type Article
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/6938
DOI 10.1080/02672571003780106
Official URL http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/0267257...
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1505 Marketing
Historical > FOR Classification > 1901 Art Theory and Criticism
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Hospitality Tourism and Marketing
Keywords ResPubID20704, inauthenticity, authenticity, literary museum
Citations in Scopus 44 - View on Scopus
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