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Volume 4, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 2047-7368
  • E-ISSN: 2047-7376



The article discusses the impact that cinema has had on the Città dei Sassi/the City of Stones throughout its recent history, specifically on its preservation and touristic development against the odds of its southern backwardness. This article provides a comprehensive look at the phenomenon of urban development and film-induced tourism through the use of a variety of sources that cover a wide spectrum of fields: Materan architecture, preservation and urban development, cultural and anthropological texts, theoretical discourses about the evocative and symbolic power of film location, economic discussions about film tourism and documents about policy-making and tourism in Matera and the region Basilicata. In particular, the article explores three films that have significantly contributed to the exposure of Matera in the national and international arena: Pier Paolo Pasolini’s The Gospel (1964), Mel Gibson’s The Passion (2004), and Rocco Papaleo’s Basilicata Coast to Coast (2010).


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