Topographies of the Kasbah Route: Hardening of a heritage trail

Wagner, L.B.; Minca, C.


In 1932, the Tourism Syndicate of the French Protectorate government in Morocco published a guidebook for French tourists to follow the ‘Route des Kasbas’ through southern Morocco. The trajectory described is still in many ways reproduced by contemporary guiding materials, delineating specific routes where this ‘heritage’ might be found in Morocco and what sorts of mobilities are necessary to seek it. Using these guiding resources from ‘the field’, along with our own ethnographic experiences as travelling researchers, we trace how colonial cartographical rationalities structured in this region along its ‘road’, through promotion by the French Protectorate government as a mobile site for tourism, and how that infrastructural and economic sedimentation persists in contemporary mobilities through it – including our own mobilities as
tourism researchers. We question when and how it might be possible to escape this cartographic specificity for other spatialities of this road.