Battlefields, repatriation, and Indigenous Peoples Addressing dissonant heritage in warfare tourism in Australia and North America in the 21st Century

From an Indigenous perspective, warfare tourism includes a wide range of conflict sites, such as battlefields, areas where human remains are or have been wrongfully buried, removed or repatriated, locations where Indigenous peoples have been incarcerated and enslaved, scenes of frontier violence, as well as issues central to Indigenous people’s involvement in the armed forces and their struggles for self-governance in post-colonial contexts. The relative absence of Indigenous men and women, including recognition of their perspectives of, and involvement in, these conflicts and the resultant narratives surrounding these events have resulted in selective dialogues that have in turn contributed (either directly or indirectly) to the erasure of these Indigenous contributions from visitor experiences. The goal of this presentation is to examine the omission of Indigenous narratives in battlefield and repatriation sites while also highlighting how certain sites of conflicts have attempted to address this heritage dissonance by diversifying interpretation strategies and implementing collaborative management approaches. This is accomplished through content analysis and field research and a series of recommendations emerging from the analysis of the case studies. By providing an Indigenous and post-colonial perspective of warfare tourism, we add to the discussion on warfare tourism and critical studies.

ICTSC_Extended_Manuscript_April_11_2013.pdf download View | Download
Keywords: battlefields, dissonant heritage, indigenous, warfare tourism
Categories: Critical scholarship in action