Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Security Challenge for Durban’s Tourist Authority

In the chapter, The Security Challenge for Durban’s Tourist Authority, Sabrina Grosse Kettler focuses on how the tourist industry responds to the fear of crime. The industry seeks to counter the image of Durban as a dangerous city, yet it must also present the reality of crime accurately in order to protect the tourists. Through interviews with hotel managers and tourist agents, Sabrina identifies some of their strategies: emphasising safe havens (malls or private beaches); presenting Durban as ‘just like anywhere in the world’; and even making a virtue of Durban’s bad reputation by presenting poor and dangerous spaces as tourist attractions catered for by organised tours. Sabrina attended an educational campaign at Westville prison aimed at improving young offenders' attitudes toward foreign tourists so as to curtail future crimes against them. She provides a fascinating account of their experiences and feelings about the campaign.

Kettler, Sabrina Grosse. 'The Security Challenge for Durban’s Tourist Authority', in Rob Pattman and Sultan Khan (Eds.), Undressing Durban (Durban: Madiba Press, 2007), pp. 257-262.