Slumdog Tourism - Who Really Profits?


In Slumdog Millionaire, people around the world could learn about the harsh realities of growing up in the slums of Mumbai while safely cocooned in a cool, dark theater, popcorn and coke in hand. While some people were outraged by the social realities revealed in the movie, they may have been eventually mollified by its end in which love conquers all. And while the movie may just have jump-started a budding industry in which Westerners get a glimpse of the world's worst slums, parceled out an day at a time, Kennedy Odede, a junior at Wesleyan University originally from one of the largest slums in Africa, argues in this New York Times' op-ed piece that the new wave of slum tourism brought on by movies like Slumdog Millionaire are no help for the people who actually have to live there: "Slum tourism is a one-way street: They get photos; we lose a piece of our dignity."

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