Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Response: Slum Tourism confusions

This is in response to the article on the Worldhum website. Read the article by Eric Wiener here

Slumming It: Can Slum Tourism Be Done Right?

I think it is very well put Eric, and I appreciate that you have not only written about it from one side, I think though you have a clear opinion, the article is very balanced. It is very difficult to say when tourism starts becoming voyeuristic and unjust and irresponsible and what the borders are.

Using an example from my country, is going through a poor village in the mountains of Nepal and “looking” into their lives irresponsible? Some of these villagers are poorer than the Mumbai slum communities.

I think that we are too quick to draw a line in our minds between good and bad. What is important is that the practice needs to be right. A school for the slum kids can make a big big impact and difference in the lives of the people in the slums. Agreed, that if the tours were going to Tak Mahal and the donations to the slum school, it might have been better, but there are chances of making a bigger impact by taking the tours (responsible practices apply here) through the slums itself. There is a cross-cultural aspect of tourism that cannot be ignored, that understanding each others conditions can help foster a better global thinking between humans!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...