Dialectical emotions in a dark heritage site: A study at the Auschwitz Death Camp

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23 Scopus citations


This study was designed to explore the emotional experience during the visit to the Auschwitz Death Camp, and its relationship to the perceptions of benefits gained from the visit as well as the quality of the experience. A mix method approach was adopted. Following a qualitative study, questionnaires (n = 553) were distributed in four languages. The findings which are based on the PANAS index revealed an emotional duality. The study highlights the central role of the negative emotions and the significant contribution of these emotions to visitor's satisfaction, as well as to the perceived benefits derived from the visit. The study challenges the emphasis of tourism research on positive emotions and its view of negative emotions as having a negative impact, leading to dissatisfaction with the visitor experience. The findings emphasize the need to conceptualize the visitor experience and address the positive contribution of negative emotions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104194
JournalTourism Management
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2021


  • Dark heritage site
  • Heritage tourism
  • Positive and negative emotions
  • Visitor experience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Transportation
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management
  • Strategy and Management


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