Cinema, Destination Image and Place Branding Cinema, Destination Image & Place Branding - Page 153

FILM-INDUCED SLUM TOURISM: A LITERATURE REVIEW AND MODEL PROPOSAL actual attraction (Whyte et al., 2011), while the latter designates a model in which the main goal is delivering benefits to the poor (Ashley & Roe, 2002; Harris, 2009). Most slum tours however, are marketed as an activity that reinvests its profits in the communities. Nevertheless, reflecting some of the mentioned criticisms, as the studies of Freire-Medeiros & Menezes (2013) and Frisch (2012) corroborate, some operators don’t pursue a shared revenue policy with the community and a very small part of the profits is reinvested, often in the form of charity. One of the actors responsible for slum tourism’s negative image is its promoters. As showed by Priv- itera (2015), for instance, companies go as far as classifying favelas as theme parks, in an extreme example of Dysneyfication. There are however arguments in favour of slum tourism. Defenders state that the harms associated with slum tours occur in many forms of tourism, citing counter examples in which the purpose is tied with educational benefits, in a way that tourists, operators and residents are all better off (or at least not made worse) as a result of the activity (Whyte et al., 2011). Freire-Medeiros (2009) mentions as well the potential to enhance the local economy as well as the inhabitants’ self- esteem; and the opportunity they provide tourists to combine solidarity and leisure in one package. In this regard, some tours are particularly embedded with philanthropic ideals, intertwining charity, urban poverty and tourism (Dürr, 2012). Freire-Medeiros (2011) argues that many critics adopt excessively normative and reductionist arguments towards slum tourism, departing from an idealised sin- gular type of visitor, the voyeur in a touring poverty zoo. This reductionist view is also mentioned by Dyson (2012), who states that journalists often convey their personal position constructing them around the dualism of slum tourism being voyeuristic or non-voyeuristic, helpful or harmful, in an attempt to classify a com- plex phenomenon in black or white terms. In the case of the favelas, Freire-Medeiros (2011) explains that these reduc- tionist views are not reflected by the reality encountered in such tours, which reveals a rich diversity of tourist profiles and means of visiting the favela. Besides, it also improves the image of the place and deconstructs prejudices. This is cor- roborated by company owners and tour-guides, who claim that a central goal of the tour is to deconstruct the association of the place with violence and drug only. Indeed, as concluded by Rolfes (2009) in tours in favelas, as well as in Indian slums and South African Townships, it has been confirmed that tourists leave with a wider view of those places, which they start associating with positive elements like cul- ture or entrepreneurship. Those results are also congruent with the ones obtained return to the content page 153