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KCI등재 학술저널

Jeju Island, Shedding its Dark Past and Becoming a Space of Peace

This paper sheds new light on Jeju Island as a unique touristic site where the painful history of exploitation during the Japanese colonial era and the beautiful landscape co-exist. “Dark tourism” refers to visiting a place where a historical tragedy occurred to remember and memorialize past events. Most recently, Jeju Island was announced as an ‘Island of World Peace’ whence a message of peace is to be conveyed to its visitors through tourism. Focusing on Jeju Island offers an opportunity to re-interpret dark tourism. Central to this study have been the questions of reinterpretation of Jeju Island as a ‘space’ reflecting its own characteristics of place. In this article, we aim to explore the possibility of transitioning from a tragic historical place to one emblematic of peace through the retooled message conveyed to visitors, as well as through historical education tourism. We visited the military facilities, GamaOreum, Cave Fort, and the Jeju Peace Museum, as well as Altteureu Airfield, which was built during Japanese occupation, through seven separate field studies from April 2018 to July 2022. Remnants of the Japanese colonial era remain throughout the islands and the history is still relevant to local residents. This study highlights the importance of considering the local community and their residential area in developing a tourist destination. This study presents a new angle of promising applications for future tourism resources in Jeju Island.

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