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Remembering Bali as Paradise

The Bombing of Kuta and the Recovery of the Balinese Tourist Identity

Clare B. Fischer

Keywords: Bali; terrorism; violence; paradise tourism; tourist identity; tourist memory; commemorative ritual

The 2002 bombing of the tourist nightclubs in Bali created multiple disturbances: it exposed the history of violence, destabilized the tourism economy and prompted a public debate about the comparative virtues of a revitalized tourism industry. Two televised commemorative ceremonies were performed to restore local relations and the global memory of Bali as a peaceful, tropical paradise: the cleansing ceremony and the first anniversary ceremony. Rather than promoting healing, these rituals further disclosed and exacerbated complex tensions within the Balinese society and its tourism industry.

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