The Jeff Does Vegas Podcast

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Dark Tourism

September 5, 2022

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Dark Tourism - otherwise known as Thana Tourism, Black Tourism, or Morbid Tourism - is the term used to describe travel to places that are historically associated with death and tragedy.

Dark Tourism destinations exist all over the world; from Nazi concentration camps in Poland, to the site of the Chernobyl disaster in Ukraine, to Ground Zero in New York City.  There are Jack the Ripper tours in London, Pablo Escobar tours in Colombia and even JFK assassination tours in Dallas.

But what is it that brings people to these types of attractions?  Why has so-called Dark Tourism seen such a boom in recent years?

My guest for this episode of the podcast is here to answer that question...and many others.

Marta Soligo teaches Sociology of Leisure at the University of Nevada Las Vegas and is also a visiting professor at the University of Bergamo in Italy, where she teaches Sociology of Tourism.  Marta has also done extensive research into Dark Tourism, specifically as it relates to celebrity culture.

Marta and I discussed what got her interested in studying tourism & leisure from the sociology side of things, why people are attracted to "the macabre", and she shared a few examples of Dark Tourism destinations in Las Vegas.

If you'd like to learn more about Dark Tourism, there are LOTS of great resources on line including Google Scholar (which has - literally - HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of great articles on the subject) and the website, dark-tourism.com featuring an extensive database of over a thousand Dark Tourism sites in 115 different countries around the world! 

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