Ethnographic film (2001) (10 min.)
Author: Nataša Rogelja Caf
The ethnographic film Fishing Tourists brings to the fore the secondary livelihood activities of Slovene fishers, reflecting on continuity and change in marine fishing communities. Particular attention is paid to one of the adaptive strategies increasingly adopted by fishermen in Slovenia after 1991, combining fishery with tourism.
The ethnographic film Fishing Tourist shows a day-long excursion at sea of a group of peasant women. These women could not go on a week-long vacation due to their farm responsibilities, so the ‘one day off’, as they called their trip to the Slovenian coast, was the only way to bathe in the sea. The fishers stressed that through such excursions they are able to connect their fishing world with tourism, offering healthy fresh seafood to visitors while enabling themselves to maintain their close relationship with the sea. In these excursions, not much attention is paid to the heritage or the past, although the specific boat and the family shown in the film has an interesting family fishing history connected also with industrial fishing. The fishers’ innovative approach lies precisely in the fact that they bypass the ‘burden’ of the complicated local history of North Adriatic characterised by various waves of migration and numerous changes to political borders. Instead of ‘Fishing for Heritage’ (2003), the title of Jane Nadel-Klein’s book on Scottish fishermen, Slovene fishermen have taken a different approach and chosen ‘to put heritage on hold’. They fish for tourists and offer them a moment to enjoy the present.