"Memories of a Forgotten War" and Their Contemporary (Dark) Tourism Implications: An Istrian Media Perspective

Metod Šuligoj

Abstract


Employing a sociological discourse analysis of media
reports, this study aims to identify and typologise World War
I-related memorial events in the cross-border region of Istria,
which is traditionally heavily involved in international tourist
flows in Slovenia and Croatia. The theory of memory, social
amnesia, and dark tourism are thus intertwined. A corpus of
15 anniversary-related (and all accessible) media reports
from three leading regional news media outlets was included
in the analysis, which negates the complete social amnesia
of war; they were typologised as memorial services or
dark exhibitions. We found that memorial events are also
related to sport/recreation (diving) and meetings of scholars
(conferences, round tables, presentation of the book),
which resulted in a revised typology of memorial events.
The analysed events scattered throughout the peninsula
have limited tourist significance and also reflect the Istrian
social reality, specifically multiculturalism and transcultural
memory. The paper concludes with an overview of the
scholarly and practical implications and limitations of the
approach used.


Keywords


memorial events typology; dark tourism; Istrian peninsula; Istrian history; WWI

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Print ISSN 1330-0288 | Online ISSN 1848-6096