Yak Donalds, Nepal- (Research blog)

Last summer, I travelled to a remote touriste area in Nepal called Mustang. The region is starting to become a major tourist destination for Nepalese as well foreigners. As a result, they are changing their traditional ways to cater to the tourism industry. In the process, they are in some ways appropriating “western” culture. For example, there are lot of restaurants in the area catering specifically to western tourist and some Nepalese tourists. One of the interesting one was called Yac Donald. I thought this word play was interesting. They have taken something that any western would recognize (i.e. MacDonalds) and made it their own by using yak which is a domestic animal native to the region (and much of the Himalaya). When I first saw it, some of the questions I had were, if small changes such as this was the first sign of globalization in this what used to be a remote region closed from much of the world. Another thing is, Mustang is not the only one going through such appropriation of “western” culture. Much of the country starting from the capital city to the most remote areas are engaged in this process. With my research I hope to show these appropriations of “Western culture” by the “locals” using restaurants and the idea of fast food. more to come… 

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