Acceptance or Challenge?
Edited By Izabela Handzlik and Lukasz Sorokowski
Controversies over Polish city marketing strategies
Abstract: The paper illustrates the key findings of the research held in 2013 concerning the city marketing of selected cities. The study shows that cultural diversity is a vastly abused theme in the city marketing narratives. Applying cultural diversity themes into the past is being treated as a fashionable keyword that does not reflect the proper meaning of the concept. The diffusion of sense creates a convenient space for building a marketing story. In all five cases, cultural diversity has never been part of city history. The city marketing narrative states otherwise. The article discusses a variety of abuses of the notion of permeation of cultures and its meaning in the narratives of five selected Polish cities.
Keywords: city marketing, cultural heritage, cultural identity, stereotypes, simulacrum, cultural plurality
Problems with the city marketing narrative begin when the narrative claims something different than the truth. Plurality of cultures was an important in meaning, yet marginal in size, element of Polish history. Moreover, with the proper, modern understanding of cultural diversity, it is impossible to state that Polish cities are or have been culturally diversified. Still, many Polish city marketing narratives state otherwise. The idea to name Polish cities as culturally diversified is a disturbing notion in the Polish cities marketing narratives. The scale of abuse of the themes of permeation of cultures is disturbing. The paper looks at a variety of “cultural diversity themes” misuses in the city marketing. The misunderstanding of the plurality of...
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