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Sociological impressionism in a hospitality context

Lynch, P.A. (2006) Sociological impressionism in a hospitality context. Annals of Tourism Research, 32 (3). pp. 527-548. ISSN 0160-7383

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Abstract

Qualitative research approaches in hospitality are underdeveloped. As a contribution to addressing this shortcoming, sociological impressionism - a form of autobiographical sociology - is described and associated issues are examined. The methodological discussion is contextualized within the homestay sector and historical developments in qualitative research. An overview of previous significant investigations of commercial and private homes is supplied and their research methods are appraised. A synopsis of the principal findings from the current study employing sociological impressionism is provided. Methodological issues considered include selectivity, host-guest matching, and the autonomy of qualitative work. The potential of this research theme in exploring intangible dimensions of hospitality is highlighted.