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'The tourism labour conundrum' extended: Historical perspectives on hospitality workers

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The article by Zampoukos and Ioannides on 'The tourism labour conundrum' in the first issue of Hospitality and Society opened out important, and seldom investigated, issues in the understanding of the hospitality labour force. This applies at least as much to historical as to geographical studies, and this article opens out a largely hidden literature on the experience of labour in the hospitality trades, with particular emphasis on labour relations, social conflict, gender, 'race' and ethnicity, migration and identities. It takes a broad view of the hospitality trades, and emphasizes that hospitality and tourism are overlapping but far from identical concepts. It covers four centuries and many parts of the world, while accepting the constraints imposed by the nature and range of the existing literature, and by uneven access to work in languages other than English, Spanish and French. It aims at encouraging the opening out of this neglected field of study to new research by historians and others who are interested in using the past to further the better understanding of the present.

Keywords: culture; ethnicity; history; hospitality; labour; migration; tourism; trade unions

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: IKERBASQUE, University of the Basque Country

Publication date: 2012-08-08

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  • Hospitality & Society is an international multidisciplinary social sciences journal focusing upon hospitality and exploring its connections with wider social and cultural processes and structures. The journal welcomes submissions from various disciplines and aims to be an interactive forum expanding frontiers of knowledge and contributing to the literature on hospitality social science. Articles that stimulate debate, discussion and exchange across disciplines are welcomed, as well as review essays or short topical pieces that are provocative and problematic in nature.
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