Preparation, simulation and the creation of community: Exodus and the case of diaspora education tourism

Erik H. Cohen

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    14 Scopus citations


    The Exodus boat tour and the Israel Experience to which it is allied, are among the most consciously organized, well-reported and carefully evaluated examples of diaspora tourism. Since the inception of the Exodus Program, over 12,000 young Jews from various diaspora countries have taken part in the programme (More 2002). This represents a tremendous achievement in nurturing educational heritage tourism among the Jewish diaspora. Based on the evaluations of the participants themselves as well as the comments of the staff, reporters and other observers on board, the Exodus Program has become one of the most powerful parts of an already highly rated and strongly recommended tour programme. Young tourists who took the Exodus boat trip have been found to have had a significantly different experience in Israel than those who flew directly to Tel Aviv. When the evaluations of all the Israel Experience participants were compared, those who arrived by boat were more satisfied with their time in Israel than those who arrived by the more common air route. This provoked a series of research questions which this chapter seeks to address. For instance, what has made the experience onboard so powerful for participants? How and why did the Exodus Program have such a significant impact on a visitor’s subsequent time in Israel? And how has the original historical event been presented in simulation to groups of teenagers two generations later?
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationTourism, Diasporas and Space
    PublisherRoutledge Taylor & Francis Group
    Number of pages15
    ISBN (Print)0203458389, 9780203458389
    StatePublished - 2 Apr 2014


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