Dark Tourism

Here’s an interesting article that I’ve come across regarding tourist attractions filled with historical human death and destruction. Places like Auschwitz, and Ground Zero. Why are we attracted to these sites? Why do millions of people visit them every year?

To read the article, click here.


The Handmaid’s Tale

“In front of us, to the right, is the store where we order dresses. Some people call them habits, a good word for them. Habits are hard to break. The store has a huge wooden sign outside it, in the shape of a golden lily; Lilies of the Field, it’s called. You can see the place under the lily, where the lettering was painted out, when they decided that even the names of shops were too much temptation for us. Now places are known by their signs alone.
Lilies used to be a movie theatre, before. Students went there a lot; every spring they had a Humphrey Boghart festival, with Lauren Bacall or Katherine Hepburn, women on their own, making up their minds. They wore blouses with buttons down the front that suggested the possibilities of the word undone. These women could be undone; or not. They seemed to be able to choose. We seemed to be able to choose, then. We were a society dying, said Aunt Lydia, of too much choice.”

– Margaret Atwood,
The Handmaid’s Tale

The Help

“The sun is bright but my eyes is wide open. I stand at the bus stop like I been doing for forty-odd years. In thirty minutes, my whole life’s…done. Maybe I ought to keep writing, not just for the paper, but something else, about all the people I know and the things I seen and done. Maybe I ain’t too old to start over, I think, and I laugh and cry at the same time at this. Cause just last night I thought I was finished with everything new.”

– Kathryn Stockett,
The Help


“I got the idea from our family’s plant book. The place where we recorded those things you cannot trust to memory. The page begins with the person’s picture. A photo if we can find it. If not, a sketch or painting by Peeta. There, in my most careful handwriting, come all the details it would be a crime to forget. Lady licking Prim’s cheek. My father’s laugh. Peeta’s father with the cookies. The colour of Finnick’s eyes. What Cinna could do with a length of silk. Boggs reprogramming the Holo. Rue poised on her toes, arms slightly extended, like a bird about to take flight. On and on. We seal the pages with salt water and promises to live well to make their deaths count.”

– Suzanne Collins
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay

Weekly Photo Challenge: Abandoned (Dan Marbaix)

For the photo challenge this week, I’ve decided to showcase another photographer’s work instead of my own. This is mainly because his photographs are brilliant and fit perfectly with the theme of “abandonment” this week. I’m a big fan of his work and I hope he receives the recognition he deserves.

The photographer is Dan Marbaix. Marbaix photographs old, abandoned buildings around the world. He has been arrested over twenty times for trespassing – all for the purpose of creating his art.

His photographs really make you think. What happens to buildings after they have been abandoned? Does life still remain within these buildings? Perhaps not in the traditional sense, but I believe they do. Take a look at Marbaix’s photography project and you will see. His photographs are full of life, even though there are no humans in sight.

But the most intriguing question that we all need to ask is why these buildings were abandoned in the first place. I can understand about the asylums and churches, but what about the family homes? I think history has a lot to do with the back-story of these photographs.

To view more of Marbaix’s work, check out his Flickr page.

For Marbaix’s contact information, visit his official website here.

What do you think of his work? Please leave a comment.