Vol 55 No 1, 2016
A Special Issue on Scandinavian Media Tourism
Anne Klara Bom introduces our special issue dedicated to Media Tourism in Scandinavia.
For centuries, the Jutland peninsula in Denmark was covered by heathland. From the end of the eighteenth century, the heath and its few residents were described to the middle classes in Copenhagen as ’Denmark’s wilderness’. The heath was considered a picturesque contrast to the cities. This intensified as industrialisation gained a foothold in Copenhagen, Odense etc. Artists, genre painters and authors created the picture of an authentic and strange wilderness with immense wilds, strange inhabitants and magnificent nature. During the nineteenth century, writers like Hans Christian Andersen and Steen Steensen Blicher created the picture of the heath as an exotic, wonderful and wild place. Thus these artists created a literary place of inheritance, a special landscape that was considered by the Danes to mirror the soul of the people. From the mid nineteenth century, the effective farming started cultivating the heath and from 1870, this was intensified by the Society for Heathland Reclamation. Consequently the image of the heath as an authentic and inalienable place crystallised, precisely because it was being lost. A number of poets and artists, for example Jeppe Aakjær, sided with the heath. They defended the remaining parts of the heath and made it what it is today. This article examines a number of texts that were central to the construction of the heath as literary place of inheritance.
In this article I reflect on how media tourism in the Scandinavian region is related to the popularity of the Scandinavian crime fiction industry and more recently ‘Nordic Noir’. I investigate how the increasing market for film tourism influences crime fiction and television drama series. I look at the role played by television landscapes, assessing their aesthetic, narrative and economic value as series as well as in the context of the tourism industry. The success of Wallander tourism in Ystad has inspired a range of film tourism initiatives, which represent a new kind of creative and strategic collaboration between tourism, regional authorities and the television drama industry. Thus, Nordic landscapes and climate have become a commodity. I analyse the television drama series Wallander and Broen (The Bridge) as well as promotional material, film tourism websites and interviews with film tourism managers in Sweden and in Denmark. This study illustrates the aesthetics and business of television landscapes, and demonstrates how place in television is crucial to our understanding of how television drama series induce tourism. Finally, the article considers whether tourism also induces television drama productions.
(University College of Southeast Norway)
Narratives emerging from film and literature can be used as geopolitical tools for those working with place-making and promotion in the tourist industry. Film-induced tourism is a genre which in recent years has become increasingly relevant and has attracted attention in the context of regional development. The overarching concern of this article is to what extent film-induced heritage tourism can play a role in regional business development and in the mediation of history. After an initial discussion of the field, the article reflects critically on its key issues on the basis of a case study. In 2008, Agder Research undertook a culture-based business project which centred on a film about the historical phenomenon of children’s migrations (barnevandring) in Southern Norway. The film was entitled Yohan – Barnevandrer (YOHAN – The Child Wanderer) and was released in 2010. The article presents some of the observations that emerged from the project through action research. The business project is also contextualised internationally and in relation to three Swedish narrative tourist destinations: Arn tourism; Astrid Lindgren tourism; and Vilhelm Moberg tourism. The investigations reveal that success in this area demands much of practitioners. Ultimately, the article calls for a much more critical engagement with the possibilities of film tourism than is currently typical.
Cover image: Kongenshus Mindepark, photo by C. C . Thomson