This thesis focuses on the issue of dissonance in the interpretation of atrocity at museums and other cultural heritage sites. The existing debates in the field are outlined in an extensive literature review encompassing general and specific references. The basic conceptual framework of the dark tourism phenomenon is elaborated through case studies in Washington D.C., illustrating the variety of interpretative dilemmas faced by museum directors and curators. The cases include the permanent exhibition at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Enola Gay exhibition at the National Air and Space Museum, and the National Museum of the American Indian on the Mall. The identified controversies are analyzed, and recommendations for mitigating existing conflicts and suggestions for future research are offered.