Past and Present
Annabel Wharton, “Spectacularized
Jerusalem” from Selling Jerusalem,
Have you ever been to Jerusalem or The Holy Land Experience?
What are some dis-nc-ons between
theme parks and shrines or pilgrims
parks, pilgrims, or tourists do you see
in the Holy Land Experience?
What is Spectacle?
Scenes from The Holy Land Experience, Orlando, FL
“Spectacle is a performance that demands aSen-on, but refuses reciprocity; it is a
display that avoids local content, but produces a local eﬀect. Spectacle is poli-cs or
ideology that pretends to be entertainment; t is the theatrical ﬁgura-on of capital
and an expression of its excesses. When spectacle seems safe, it is probably
dangerous; when spectacle seems dangerous, it certainly is.” (190)
What is it? Why is it important? How is something judged authentic?
see it this morning, is all I could desire, and, if a
nearer acquaintance is going to disappoint and
disgust, let me not enter, but depart from this
‘Mount of Ascension’ carrying away the picture
already imprinted on my heart.” [Viewing
from a distance but not close up]
William Mason Turner: “On account of this
ubiquity of holy objects and curiosi-es, the
whole church and its wonders necessarily
appear as a sham, and the high religious aw
with which we should view these wonders,
subsides into a stoical, indiﬀerent credulity,
which plainly express our opinion of everything
shown us, as humbug.”
How do these viewpoints complicate the no-on of authen-city?
early 20th century
edi-ons of "Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of
Crowds" by Charles Mackay.
Holy Land Experience, Orlando, FL