For decades, the ‘make-believe’ world of Bollywood has created elaborate imaginaries of India. A sizable part of its audience consists of diasporic communities, who not only consume Bollywood movies for entertainment but also as a way to stay connected with their Indian heritage. This study closely looks at one such diasporic community, namely the Dutch Hindustanis, investigating how Bollywood cinema affects their image of India, and how influential Bollywood cinema is in influencing their travel decisions to India. In-depth interviews indicate that Bollywood is a dominant cultural source for defining the respondents’ relationship with India. Moreover, the repeated consumption of Bollywood cinema stirs the desire to actually travel to India, seldom in search of ‘home’, but to visit sites associated with multiple Bollywood movies. Bollywood cinema being from their ‘distant homeland’ also incentivizes their travels to India thereby making it a meaningful experience. This study contributes to film (and) tourism research by introducing the concept of ‘cinematic itinerary’ to refer to these comprehensive film tourism practices.

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European Journal of Cultural Studies
Erasmus University Rotterdam

Nanjangud, A. (Apoorva), & Reijnders, S.L. (2020). Cinematic itineraries and identities: Studying Bollywood tourism among the Hindustanis in the Netherlands. European Journal of Cultural Studies. doi:10.1177/1367549420951577