International Journal of Middle East Studies

Articles

SOUVENIRS OF CONQUEST: ISRAELI OCCUPATIONS AS TOURIST EVENTS

Rebecca L. Stein c1

It is perhaps self-evident to suggest that military conquest shares something with tourism because both involve encounters with “strange” landscapes and people. Thus it may not surprise that the former sometimes borrows rhetorical strategies from the latter—strategies for rendering the strange familiar or for translating threatening images into benign ones. There have been numerous studies of this history of borrowing. Scholars have considered how scenes of battle draw tourist crowds, how soldiers' ways of seeing can resemble those of leisure travelers, how televised wars have been visually structured as tourist events (e.g., the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq), and how the spoils of war can function as a body of souvenirs. These lines of inquiry expand our understanding of tourism as a field of cultural practices and help us to rethink the parameters of militarism and warfare by suggesting ways they are entangled with everyday leisure practices.

Correspondence

c1 Rebecca L. Stein is Assistant Professor in the Departments of Cultural Anthropology and Women's Studies, Duke University, Durham, N.C. 27705, USA; e-mail: rlstein@duke.edu

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