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Cruise Ship Blues

The Underside of the Cruise Ship Industry

Cruise Ship Blues by Ross A. Klein
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Cruising is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. Attracting more than 12 million passengers a year, cruise ship companies are merging to become be-hemoths. And cruise ships themselves have swollen dramatically in size, now sometimes carrying more than 5,000 people on board. Not surprisingly, this growth is causing huge problems—problems that the industry would rather not acknowledge, and the potential cruiser would have a hard time discovering.

Cruise Ship Blues reveals the dark underside of this industry. Author Ross Klein first examines the contrast between passenger expectations of luxury and romance fostered by rosy advertising, and the seedier reality of meals, accommodations, and facilities on board. He then:

• explodes the myth of the cruise as an all-inclusive vacation, demonstrating that the industry’s expectation is to generate an additional $200+ per day per person

• examines cruise ship safety, ringing the alarm about accidents at sea, passenger security (including the incidence of sexual assault), on-board illnesses, and medical services

• juxtaposes the industry’s environmentally friendly image against its actual behavior and the difficulties of effective regulation

• exposes the workers’ experience in these "sweatshops at sea"

• contrasts the industry’s consumer-friendly façade with its attitude that "everything would run smoothly if it were not for the passengers"

Concluding with a discussion of what can be done to make the cruise business socially and environmentally accountable, Cruise Ship Blues offers a harsh critique as well as a call to political action. It will appeal both to those considering a cruise vacation, as well as to activists and students.

Since 1992, Ross Klein has taken more than 30 cruises in all parts of the world, comprising more than 300 days. An Associate Professor of Social Work at Memorial University in St. John’s, Newfoundland, he has written widely on the cruise industry.

New Society Publishers; October 2002
209 pages; ISBN 9781550923209
Read online, or download in secure PDF format
Title: Cruise Ship Blues
Author: Ross A. Klein
 
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