GEOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH ›› 2021, Vol. 40 ›› Issue (2): 462-476.doi: 10.11821/dlyj020190989

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The social interaction processes and mechanisms between second home sojourners and local residents: A case study of Sanya city, China

WANG Jinlian1,2(), SU Qin1()   

  1. 1. College of Geographic and Tourism, Anhui Normal University, Wuhu 241000, Anhui, China
    2. College of Tourism, Huangshan University, Huangshan 245021, Anhui, China
  • Received:2019-11-13 Accepted:2020-06-08 Online:2021-02-10 Published:2021-04-10
  • Contact: SU Qin;


The second home sojourn has emerged in the grey zone between short-term tourism and permanent tourism immigration, which is a new phenomenon of population flow described as “lifestyle migration”, “seasonal lifestyle tourism” or “residential tourism”. The second home sojourn, which has become popular across the Western world and in the developing countries such as China, is a response to the desire of people for leisure, health and a more comfortable lifestyle. With the rise and the shift of study on “everyday life” in geography academia, the daily life and social interaction have become an important research field in tourism geography studies. Geography has shifted its interest on daily life from grand structural narration to diversification and microcosm. Relevant literature concerning the development of second home sojourn and the social interaction is reviewed, and striking differences are found to exist between second home sojourners and local residents, which are reckoned to be the primary factors affecting the social interaction between each other. However, no current research has deepened our understanding of how such differences are constructed. There is limited understanding of how these cultural and social differences shape the way they act in relation to each other. Therefore, a case study of Sanya city is carried out, targeting at exploring the roots of non-internal differences between the second home residents and the local residents, and the micro-processes of these differences on social interaction, starting from the subjective initiative of “human” within the symbolic interaction theory framework. It is discovered that there exists a notable opposition between “Sanya people” and “Northeastern people”, due to the differences in identity symbols, and cultural and geographic environment between travelers (“outsiders”) and residents (“locals”). However, these differences are endowed with new connotations through the definitions and interpretations of “human”, thus affecting the social interaction between them. The detailed processes include three phases: the knowledge of others, the evaluation of others and the willingness to interact with others. It is concluded that both second home sojourners and local residents tend to know little of others, form negative judgments on others, and have little willingness to interact with others. The research on the internal operation mechanisms of social interaction at the micro level is supposed to improve the effectiveness and pertinence of macro policy-making and promote the sustainable development of second home sojourn destinations.

Key words: second home sojourners, local residents, social interaction, progress, mechanism, difference