Branding post-war Sarajevo: journalism, memories, and dark tourism

Volcic, Zala, Erjavec, Karmen and Peak, Mallory (2013) Branding post-war Sarajevo: journalism, memories, and dark tourism. Journalism Studies, 15 6: 726-742. doi:10.1080/1461670X.2013.837255

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Author Volcic, Zala
Erjavec, Karmen
Peak, Mallory
Title Branding post-war Sarajevo: journalism, memories, and dark tourism
Journal name Journalism Studies   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1461-670X
Publication date 2013-09-30
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/1461670X.2013.837255
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 15
Issue 6
Start page 726
End page 742
Total pages 17
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Formatted abstract
After the violent wars of the 1990s, Bosnia and Herzegovina is heavily promoting its tourism industry with the capital city of Sarajevo as the prime destination. Sarajevo became a city of death during 1992–1995, and its siege remains etched in local and global memories as a time of bombing, horrific shelling of locals, and brutal destruction of the city's cultural heritage. Today Sarajevo faces many dilemmas, including how to remember the 1990s trauma and how to represent the city to citizens and foreign visitors. Here we explore how Sarajevo journalists remember the city's recent violent conflict, and how war memory becomes commodified and branded for tourism. Furthermore, we analyse how prominent global media represent Sarajevo as a tourism destination after the war. On the basis of in-depth interviews with Sarajevo journalists, and an analysis of travel reviews in prominent international publications, we argue that Sarajevo is a place where branding and memories converge. Sarajevo is transformed into a tourist attraction where trauma of the past is being sold, while promising some authentic path towards understanding the violent past. Local journalists and global media alike frame the city as a “brand” while celebrating the inherent authenticity of post-war travel in order to promote and sell Sarajevo.
Keyword Bosnia and Herzegovina
Dark tourism
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Published online: 30 Sep 2013

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Communication and Arts Publications
Centre for Critical and Cultural Studies Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 3 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 4 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Thu, 23 Jan 2014, 01:43:44 EST by Rebecca Ralph on behalf of Centre for Critical and Cultural Studies