Everyday Las Vegas: Local Life in a Tourist Town
Every year, more than thirty-five million people from all over the world visit Las Vegas; only two million call the city home. Everyday Las Vegas takes a close look at the lives of those who live in a place the rest of the world considers exotic, even decadent. Using broad research, including interviews with more than one hundred Las Vegans, Rex Rowley - who grew up in Las Vegas - examines everyday life in a place that markets itself as an escape from mundane reality. Rowley considers such topics as why people move to Las Vegas, the nature of their work and personal lives, the impact of growth and rapid change, and interaction with the overwhelmingly touristic side of the city. He also considers the benefits and perils of living in a nonstop twenty four-hour city rich in entertainment options and easy access to gambling, drugs, and other addictions. His examination includes the previously unstudied role of neighbourhood casinos patronised by locals rather than tourists and the impact that a very mobile population has on schools, churches, and community life. Rowley considers the very different ways people perceive a place as insiders or outsiders, a dichotomy that arises when tourism is a mainstay of the local economy. His work offers insights into what Las Vegas can teach us about other cities and American culture in general. It also contributes to our understanding of how people relate to places and how the personality of a place influences the lives of people who live there.