Tourism Conflicts and Conflict Tourism: Curating “Holoscapes” in Europe’s Age of Crisis

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The notion of a European heritage has become one of the main pillars
of the EU’s cultural policy. However, instead of the political wish for
a European shared patrimony, Europe faces a highly conflicted past,
which has become for many Europeans a contested heritage with strong
repercussions for the backward-looking notion of European culture. For,
there is no heritage without culture and no culture without conflict. One’s
heritage also defines one’s identity, and the willingness of Europeans,
and “Western” tourists more in general, to identify with deplorable and
painful pasts makes Holocaust heritage tourism into a kind of healing
experience. More than being a matter of shared values, the conservation
of such painful pasts deals with their present uses. In other words, the
meaning of heritage is produced by politics of memory and identity as
much as by the performative experience of heritage tourists and other
stakeholders with often conflicted interests and competing memories.
This has resulted in many parts of Europe (and beyond) in what I would
call urban “Holoscapes”, where visitors now walk in the footsteps of
victims in a virtually re-enacted site without Jews.
Keywords: conflict, heritage, tourism, Holoscapes, Europe
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHeritage and Tourism
Subtitle of host publicationPlaces, Imageries and the Digital age
EditorsLinde Egberts, Maria D. Alvarez
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9789048536443
ISBN (Print)9789462985353
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Publication series

NameLandscape and Heritage Series
ISSN (Print)2405-9870

Bibliographical note

The book publication is released in AUP's Landscape and Heritage Series


  • Heritage Tourism
  • European cultural heritage
  • Conflct Heritage
  • Holocaust Tourism
  • Holoscapes
  • Virtual Jewishness
  • Urban heritage
  • politics of memory


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