Issue 2/2020, 5. Volume Page 169–186
The Cruise City as an area of conflict
Imaginations of the cruise ship in the Northern Adriatic
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Cruise ships and cruise travels have been causing fierce conflicts in various European destinations for some years now. Venice’s historical center has received full coverage in the media portrayal of the destructive impact of arriving ships, due to their disproportionate dimensions against the medium-sized city’s backdrop. While public debates mainly revolve around overtourism and ecological and health implications, the industry’s conflicts and impacts are more far-reaching but remain blind spots. This contribution docks in the cruise cities of Venice and Monfalcone in the northern Adriatic. Taking the two settings as an example, it discusses the effects of the coexistence of cruise tourism and shipbuilding. By following the debates about the cruise ship, the article explores the local impacts of a global market and a deterritorialized industry. Regarding the two cities, the ship bundles imaginations of opposing views. While protests in Venice contribute to its imagination as an intruder, the Shipyard Museum in Monfalcone establishes shipbuilding as heritage without narrating the precarious conditions connected to the industry. The contribution focuses on local controversies and negotiation processes to investigate the complex relationship between the cruise industry and urban everyday life.
cruise ship, cruise industry, ethnography, imagination, protest, infrastructure, ethnicity, heritage