Critical Hospitality Symposium, Critical Hospitality Symposium II: Hospitality IS Society

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Everyday racism encounters of migrant entrepreneurs in the hospitality industry
Azin Haghighi, Paul Lynch

Last modified: 2018-07-02


This presentation will report on a study on ethnic entrepreneurship in the hospitality industry focusing upon the emergent theme of everyday racism. While there is a positive discourse in the literature regarding the contributions that migrants make to society and also in the entrepreneurship literature with regard to ethnic entrepreneurship, relatively little attention has been paid to the challenges arising from racial stereotyping and othering that such ethnic entrepreneurs may face in establishing and maintaining their businesses. Similarly, in the hospitality literature there has been a tendency to either largely neglect or ignore the dark side of the hospitality industry or simply pay fleeting and spasmodic attention to enduring issues such as modern slavery and sexual violence. Drawing upon a sample of Iranian migrants living in the United Kingdom, the presentation will examine one of the main findings of the study, which is that of the everyday racism encounters experienced by the entrepreneurs. The presentation will discuss the findings in the light of the United Kingdom being perceived as less welcoming to migrants and refugees since Brexit (which occurred after the completion of the study) and the implications with regard to the creation of and possibilities for ‘hospiety’ – a hospitable society.

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