An Investigation of the Differences that Exist between Generations in Relation to Supporting Dark Tourism in Northern Ireland

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Simone-Charteris, Maria T.
Kirkpatrick, Jade
McLaughlin, Christopher
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DBS Library Press
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In dark tourism research there is a scarcity of literature that discusses Northern Ireland as a dark tourism destination. This research study was undertaken to investigate the difference in the level of support for dark tourism in Northern Ireland between the generations who lived through the Troubles and those who heard about them. This study employed a qualitative research method based on the completion of focus groups consisting of Protestants and Catholics from different generations. This allowed the authors to gather the views of different Northern Ireland residents' groups. The research found that the views of the younger generation (aged 18-35) and the middle-aged generation (36-55) are similar. These generations believe that the Troubles should be utilised for the purpose of dark tourism as this will benefit Northern Ireland financially and socially. In contrast, the older generation (aged 56- 75+) believes that the Troubles are too recent to be exploited for dark tourism development. This is in line with the literature on the topic that was consulted as part of this research.