Original Article

Snobbery and the triumph of bourgeois values: a speculative analysis of implications for hospitality

Published in:
Volume 4, issue 1&2, 2014 , pages: 9–12
DOI: 10.2989/RHM.2014.4.1&2.2.1248
Author(s): Roy C. WoodAcademy of Hotel and Facility Management, NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences, Breda, The Netherlands


This is a ‘small’ paper that offers a broad-brush view of the nature of bourgeois values and implications of the same for our
understanding of certain aspects of hospitality. The argument is speculative, but assertive. Bourgeois values, it is suggested, are
inevitably snobbish in nature and designed to both construct and maintain largely irrelevant ‘cultural’ differences between and
within social classes. This generation of difference is integrally consistent with the capitalist mode of production, facilitating the
creation of demand for essentially artificial needs and wants. In the context of hospitality, bourgeois values sustain a language of
hierarchy that simultaneously creates a culture of aspiration while allowing enterprises to extract optimum economic value from
carefully segmented markets.

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