University of Oulu

Strangeness — from fear to fascination : or: the sunny side of strangeness

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Author: Ottmann, Ramona1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Faculty of Science, Geography
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.8 MB)
Pages: 87
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Oulu : R. Ottmann, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-12-29
Thesis type: Master's thesis
Thesis subtype: Kansainvälinen kaksoistutkinto
Tutor: Saarinen, Jarkko Juhani
Steiner, Christian
Reviewer: Saarinen, Jarkko Juhani
Seyfi, Siamak


Xenophobic tendencies have been observed in Germany, which are mainly directed against immigrants from Muslim countries. Still, many Germans are attracted to countries in the Near and Middle East as travel destinations.

How does the perception of strangeness differ in everyday life and on holiday and which situational conditions on holiday can favor a reverse attitude of German tourists towards people from countries of the Near and Middle East? An answer to these questions not only gives conclusions about the social order and reality of Germans but also points out how intercultural sensitivity could be strengthened in their everyday life.

To better understand the ambivalent perception of strangeness in the different situations, German tourists were consulted about their intercultural experiences in qualitative in-depth interviews. The interviewees were acquired through a quantitative study conducted in advance and selected according to their answers regarding their travel behavior and political attitudes towards migrants from countries of the Near and Middle East.

Encounters play a central role in the perception of strangeness, as they create relationships between strangers. In everyday life, there are hardly any points of contact and therefore interaction between Germans and immigrants. A lack of understanding and insecurity characterize the handling and lead to prejudices, which in turn end in avoidance of encounters with immigrants. Holiday experiences at least enable experiences of foreignness. Therefore, the way in which experiences of strangeness take place on vacation is important. The generated images and experiences with foreigners on vacation can also influence the way strangeness is dealt with in everyday life.

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Note: Kansainvälinen kaksoistutkinto
International Double Degree Programme
Copyright information: © Ramona Ottmann, 2021. This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.