I recently returned from a tour of the Black Sea and felt compelled to write a few reflections about the benefits of being a historian while being on tour of the sites that ring this region. I say this in recognition that in the places visited, for reasons either historical or contemporary politics, the official spiel of the guides was carefully designed to provide a positive message about the place and one that would not offend the customers—in short something innocuous. Controversial topics should be either avoided or played down. A tourist was at a disadvantage if he had not sufficiently read relevant literature prior to the trip in order to deconstruct what he was hearing. I should state at the outset that this venture was not a study trip although three lecturers enhanced the experience.
|Panel from the Panorama at Sevastopol|