What is it and why is it so popular?
Coined around 20 years ago for ‘tourists’ visiting sites, attractions or exhibitions made famous by death, suffering and disaster. Will Coldwell in the Guardian writes: ‘When it comes to holiday jaunts, the site of a nuclear disaster zone, the home of a serial killer or the execution chamber of a former state prison don’t scream “wish you were here”. But while it might not be everyone’s idea of fun, demand for macabre attractions and disturbing experiences that recreate horrific moments in history is growing – dark tourism is on the rise.’
The following pieces will open your eyes to the differing aspects of Dark Tourism and have you question the ethics and morals around it.
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Dr. Gillian O’Brien from Liverpool John Moores University explains Dark Tourism. Discussions around the different types of DT attractions. The importance of how the exhibit is presented to visitors but especially to younger audiences, and the fine line between commercialism and commoditisation.Play
Catherine Roberts is an Associate member of the Institute for Dark Tourism Research at the University of Central Lancashire. She spoke with Jason McCrossan about her research. Included in the discussion are the people’s motivations for visiting DT sites and the moral issues surrounding these attractions?Play
Mary-Ann Ochota becomes a dark tourist herself to try and find out, visiting the former Nazi Concentration and Extermination Camp Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland. She also goes to Grenfell Tower in west London, the scene of a deadly fire that tore through a residential apartment in the summer of 2017.Play
Interesting note from the producer of the video : After watching HBO’s new mini-series ‘Chernobyl’ it’s now made me feel VERY uneasy about visiting the disaster zone, (even 30+ years after the catastrophic failure of reactor number four). At the time I was very naive to the dangers and just wanted to explore a real life ghost town.Knowing what I know now, would I go back? Would you visit?Watch
Article from the GuardianRead Article
Tidings From Hazel Kahn – Podcast
Explores the another genre of Dark Tourism, that of Slum/Poverty TourismPlay
The World Wanderers. The Morality of Dark Tourism – Podcast
Discussion on Dark Tourism including reflections on personal experiencesPlay
Is Dark Tourism OK ?
Robert Reid in National Geographic : there’s nothing inherently wrong with visiting Chernobyl’s fallout zone or other sites of past tragedy. It’s all about intention.Read More