Self-care for the researcher: dark tourism in Varanasi, India

Sharma, Nitasha and Rickly, Jillian M. (2017) Self-care for the researcher: dark tourism in Varanasi, India. Journal of Teaching in Travel & Tourism . ISSN 1531-3239

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Abstract

Dark tourism is a popular niche of tourism that allows tourists to come into close proximity with death, atrocity, and the macabre, and therefore has the potential to be an emotional and even traumatic encounter for tourists. While this context has inspired tourism researchers to investigate dark tourists’ motivations, as well as the marketing and representation of dark tourism sites, we have yet to attend to its implications for the researcher. This paper analyzes the emotional experiences and aftermath of fieldwork at the cremation grounds of Varanasi, India, which involved working closely with tourists, Doms, and Aghoris by focusing on the relations of reflexivity, positionality, and emotionality. As a result, we suggest a number of reflexive and self-care practices to be put into place so as to attend to the researchers’ emotional well-being in the fieldwork process.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Teaching in Travel & Tourism on 24/11/2017, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/15313220.2017.1403801
Keywords: Self-care; Reflexivity; Positionality; Emotionality; Dark tourism; Varanasi
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Social Sciences > Nottingham University Business School
Identification Number: 10.1080/15313220.2017.1403801
Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 06 Dec 2017 13:45
Last Modified: 06 Dec 2017 16:33
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/48581

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