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چالش هتل Bauen برای جداسازی سرمایه داری

کد مقاله سال انتشار مقاله انگلیسی ترجمه فارسی تعداد کلمات
8663 2012 21 صفحه PDF سفارش دهید محاسبه نشده
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عنوان انگلیسی
The Hotel Bauen’s challenge to cannibalizing capitalism
منبع

Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)

Journal : Annals of Tourism Research, Volume 39, Issue 2, April 2012, Pages 620–640

کلمات کلیدی
گردشگری انتقادی - جایگزین هایی برای سرمایه داری - گردشگری به عنوان کار
پیش نمایش مقاله
پیش نمایش مقاله چالش هتل Bauen برای جداسازی سرمایه داری

چکیده انگلیسی

Contemporary capitalist globalization, neoliberalism and corporatized tourism create a cultural pedagogy asserting that there is no alternative to these systems. Taking a critical stance, this article bridges critical globalization and tourism studies to offer one alternative model to challenge this cultural pedagogy. It does this through a case study of the Hotel Bauen of Buenos Aires, Argentina which was subject to a workers’ takeover in 2003. This case study offers us insights into how an enterprise can transform its internal operating environment and its external relations in profound ways to achieve important benefits for all stakeholders, but particularly the workers. The findings from this analysis challenge the assertion that there are no alternatives to a narrowly corporatized form of tourism.

مقدمه انگلیسی

Globalizing capitalism can be described as a “historical project” focused on “managing power relations within states and across the state system” in order to create a system of market rule in the interests of “a powerful global managerial class” (McMichael, 1998, p. 304). Neoliberalism is the ideology that articulates the detailed agenda to secure this system; it is a view that asserts the private sector should be freed from excessive government intervention so that market mechanisms can run unfettered and is correlated with strong private property rights, free markets and free trade (Harvey, 2005, p. 2). This system cedes extensive power and influence to business interests (Hamilton, 2003), thereby creating a notable democratic deficit and enables the capitalist class to accumulate great wealth (Giroux, 2008). But as numerous analysts have indicated, neoliberalism has much wider effects than merely economic impacts; it is in fact reshaping societies and cultures in profound ways. One of the key controversies today among policy makers, scholars and communities concerns whether these forces should be advanced, reformed or opposed. Those speaking in support of neoliberalism, positioned in institutions like the World Trade Organization and the International Monetary Fund, government, business and academia, claim it should be advanced in the interests of economic development and human well-being. Other analysts, particularly certain economists like Jeffrey Sachs and Joseph Stiglitz as well as some policy makers, support these forces but have become concerned with the social and ecological costs of neoliberal policies and advocate a variety of measures to reform its worst aspects and humanize its processes. The opponents of globalizing capitalism and neoliberalism are numerous and come from a variety of perspectives including right-wing protectionists, left-wing socialists, environmentalists, anarchists and a mix of grassroots activists moved by local concerns. While the opponents from the right mark a distinctive grouping, the other opponents have formed what could be called a loose coalition of “transnational left activism” (Reitan, 2007, p. 7) against capitalist globalization. These activists have organized protests whenever the global managerial elite gather, from Seattle to Davos, at meetings conducted by organizations like the World Trade Organization and the World Economic Forum. They have been effective in positive actions like the Jubilee 2000 debt relief campaign and the World Social Forum. While characterized by great diversity, they generally agree on the importance of nurturing diversity, solidarity, equity and emancipatory processes. Their gatherings have featured the catchcry “another world is possible” at meetings like the annual World Social Forum where they have explored visions of a more just, equitable and sustainable future (Higgins-Desbiolles, 2008b). Since the 90s, Latin America has been at the forefront of resistance to capitalist globalization and neoliberal ideology and exploration of alternatives to these hegemonic forces. In 2003, former workers of the Hotel Bauen in Buenos Aires, Argentina seized this bankrupted and abandoned hotel, re-opened it as a worker-run cooperative and sought legalization of their control under the principle of the right to work enshrined in the Argentine Constitution. This study employs critical globalization theory to explore the dynamics operative in capitalist globalization, neoliberalism and corporatized tourism, and the resistance these arouse. It additionally offers an exploratory case study analysis of the Hotel Bauen, which examines what critical public pedagogy its example offers and what this pedagogy might offer tourism social science. While the key features of critical theory are numerous and have been detailed extensively in Kincheloe and McLaren, 2000 and Kincheloe and McLaren, 2005, and while there are many diverse critical approaches, this analysis focuses on the role of cultural pedagogy in contemporary affairs. This term is used here in the sense of Giroux who noted the “regulatory and emancipatory relationship between culture, power, and politics” and how culture “operates both symbolically and institutionally as an educational, political, and economic force” that can be used to both support and resist the assertion of power (2008, p. 117). Contemporary cultural pedagogy emanating from both capitalist globalization and corporatized tourism asserts there is no alternative to the wholesale marketization of society; as Giroux puts it, market rule is presented as “common sense” or even a force of natural law (2008). However, there are also numerous alternative practices that generate a pedagogy of resistance, teaching us how to avoid the social and ecological devastation that accompanies globalizing capitalism and neoliberalism. This analysis follows the technique of critical dialectic in which human events are understood through the conflicts and contradictions of opposing social forces. Explored here are the forces of globalizing capitalism and neoliberalism, the opposition these arouse and an in-depth case study of the Hotel Bauen, which offers an empirical insight into practical implications from this theorization. Critical theory focuses on critical emancipation, aiming for “greater degrees of autonomy and human agency” (Kincheloe & McLaren, 2005, p. 308). McLaren and Farahmandpur state “critical pedagogy is a politics of understanding, an act of knowing that attempts to situate everyday life in a larger geopolitical context …” (2005, p. 290). The actions of the workers of the Hotel Bauen model a critical emancipatory consciousness in the domain of tourism. Where does the tourism phenomenon fit into this discussion? As Morgan and Pritchard have noted, “tourism simultaneously reflects and reinforces social, cultural and economic divisions ultimately rooted outside of tourism itself” (1998, p. 6). In this era of capitalist globalization and neoliberalism, tourism has become increasingly regimented to the market and corporatized such that these separate phenomena become mutually dependent and self-reinforcing (Higgins-Desbiolles, 2008a). Higgins-Desbiolles (2006) has lamented the damage that this has done as the discourse of tourism as an industry overshadows and in effect prevents the fulfilment of tourism’s capacity as a social force. Provocatively, Cohen and Kennedy argue that “international tourism has an outreach greater than other powerful globalizing forces, even TNCs [transnational corporations]” (Hilton, 1957 and Cohen and Kennedy, 2000). Britton’s work (1982) using dependency theory to explain the dynamics of international tourism is vital to understanding how contemporary tourism and capitalist globalization support and reinforce each other. Britton explains that when a developing country is incorporated into the global capitalist economy, economic growth may result in some “trickledown effects” but “in a way that overwhelmingly transfers the great proportion of accumulated capital and welfare benefits to ruling classes and foreign interests” (1982, p. 348). These inequities resulting from corporatized tourism have resulted in tourism being placed on the agenda of transnational activism, such as the World Social Forum’s Global Summit on Tourism in Mumbai, India in 2004. The theme was “Who really benefits from tourism?” and a call was issued to “democratize tourism” (Higgins-Desbiolles, 2008b, p. 357). Since this time, activists and analysts have been examining alternatives types of tourism that might complement the search for alternative forms of globalization, including justice tourism (Higgins-Desbiolles, 2008b), domestic rural social tourism (Barkin, 2000) and volunteer tourism (Wearing, 2001). Until recently, the tourism discipline was dominated by a focus on the business domain (Higgins-Desbiolles, 2006) and conservative methodologies with a predilection for positivist research (Tribe, 2005). However, as Tribe asserts, tourism studies has recently broken through such shackles and is entering a more “postmodern” stage characterized by greater reflexivity and “innovative and radical lines of enquiry” (2005, p. 376). In particular, tourism studies have taken “a critical turn” which challenges conventional ways of knowing tourism, doing tourism research and relating to tourism stakeholders (Ateljevic, Pritchard, & Morgan, 2007). Critical studies is more than a methodology; it is an ethos. As Giroux asserts “Neoliberalism is a historical and socially constructed ideology that needs to be made visible, critically engaged, and shaken from the stranglehold of power it currently exercises over most of the commanding institutions of national and global life” (2008, p. 10). Inspired by arguments that neoliberalism is antithetical to a sustainable and fairer future, this article argues we require greater diversity, more humanistic options and a variety of alternatives that open up more equitable, democratic and tolerant spaces and offers one illustrative example. While some may be uncomfortable with such a research approach, critical theorists Kincheloe and McLaren advocate: Research thus becomes a transformative endeavour unembarrassed by the label political and unafraid to consummate a relationship to emancipatory consciousness. Whereas traditional researchers cling to the guardrail of neutrality, critical researchers frequently announce their partisanship in the struggle for a better world. (2000, p. 291). Giroux urges opponents of capitalist globalization to make visible alternative models that challenge the cultural pedagogy of neoliberalism that there is no alternative to the rule of the market (2008, p. 141). This article offers the case of the Hotel Bauen as one such example.

نتیجه گیری انگلیسی

As Higgins-Desbiolles has demonstrated, under neoliberalism tourism participates in the cultural pedagogy of marketization and as a result tourism operates on an “industrial view of the tourist destination’s people, scenery, culture and activities as commodities to be sold to the tourist consumer with all of the logic of profit extraction and exploitation that this entails” (2006, p. 1204). The value of the Hotel Bauen case study is to provide us with one alternative model that challenges the mantra that there is no alternative. Lessons can be derived by examining the alternative example it presents in internal operations as well as reading its larger significance to the global resistance movement. According to Wood, the humanity and ethics of traditional hospitality have given way to social exclusion and social control in modern hotels which “raise questions about the compatibility of the ‘industrialization of service’ with the provision of hospitality” (1994, p. 78). Hotels operating under the cultural hegemony of corporatized tourism have been criticized as virtual sweatshops for the workers, paying low wages, providing poor working conditions and precarious terms of employment (Concern, 2009). Gibson (2003) has offered us exciting work that suggests that we may imagine the role of hotels differently and consider what they tell us about wider societal dynamics. This study of the worker-run Hotel Bauen indicates that profound changes are possible in organizational relationships, organizational structures, organizational logic and workplace culture (see Table 1). Whereas under capitalism the consumer is “king”, the Hotel Bauen example shows the implications of placing the rights of workers in the spotlight. The Hotel Bauen has shown how workers can take charge of their working environment, develop their own organizational models that establish the values they wish to nurture, and create sustained conditions of adequate, reliable and equitable pay. The dignified nature of employment in the new Hotel Bauen cannot be underestimated; workers go where they like on the premises, interact with their colleagues and participate in business decision making. This stands in stark contrast to the servile employee that corporatized tourism is frequently accused of fostering (Tourism Concern, 2009).Additionally, in the era of corporatized tourism, hotels can serve ideological functions and reinforce powerful cultural pedagogies. At the height of the Cold War, Conrad Hilton, the founder of the Hilton Hotels chain, was quite conscious of this when he claimed “each of our hotels is a little America” and “we are doing our bit to spread world peace, and to fight socialism” (Hilton, 1957, p. 265). The Hotel Bauen provides a powerful counter pedagogy to capitalist globalization’s assertion that “there is no alternative”. Trigona (2006a) describes recuperated enterprises as “reversing the logic of capitalism”. Table 1 contrasts the values and approaches of capitalist enterprises and recuperated enterprises in order to show the ways in which the latter can reverse the logic of capitalism. At the centre of this divergence between capitalist enterprises and worker-run enterprises is the effort to put “people before profits”. Eduardo Murua of the Movement of Recovered Businesses in Argentina suggests we should view “businesses [as] social goods, not private goods” (cited in Magnani (2009, p. 77). While it has been argued under neoliberalism that the free market is the best and most efficient allocator of resources (e.g. Friedman, 2000), the case of the recuperated enterprises shows that enterprises that went bankrupt when run according to capitalistic principles can become viable again under workers’ control. This is to no small extent due to the fact that there are no extortionate management salaries in the recuperated enterprises. Ranis argues that these enterprises are run as a “subsistence economy” and “without the extraordinary management salaries, often 10 times the salary of the average worker, the factory is able to reinvest that income into the costs of running the factory” (2005, p. 17). The Hotel Bauen also presents a robust challenge to corporatized tourism. As Barkin (2000) has suggested, we need forms of tourism that foster pluralism and self-determination. The Hotel Bauen is one example of how a hotel can serve humanistic ends when redirected from the capitalistic blind pursuit of profits to the building of bonds of solidarity between workers, hotel clients and the external community. The BAUEN workers’ cooperative, with its egalitarian and democratic management regime, fosters the welfare of workers and, while still operating in the market system, embeds itself in its community and works for equity and justice in the wider Argentine society. It is as much a social justice enterprise as it is an economic enterprise. It suggests a model of how the efforts of enterprise can be freed from the constraints of the narrow, ideological purposes imposed under capitalism. As stated previously, McLaren and Farahmandpur challenge us to situate cases such as the Hotel Bauen in a larger geopolitical context (2005, p. 290). The Hotel Bauen provides us not only the hope of its individual example, but contributes to transformations in a region that has for over a decade resisted the imposition of neoliberalism. While seemingly a small and exceptional case, it is important to note that it is part of a larger fabric of change whose import is sweeping far beyond the confines of the hotel, and in fact constitutes part of a global resistance movement. The current era is characterized by increasingly frequent financial crises, with the recent global financial crisis concentrating minds on the perils of globalizing neoliberalism. One of the lessons to be drawn is that capital and corporations must be reigned in. The case of the Hotel Bauen invites us to see that people are not “labour costs”, “tools of production” or even “social capital”; people are people with human rights, including the right to work. The case of the Hotel Bauen demonstrates that there are workable alternatives to this ideological system which is built on accumulation by dispossession and creates legions of disposable people. The alternatives offered by these recuperated enterprises reveal possibilities of worker empowerment, greater social solidarity and market enterprises focused on social ends. These enterprises offer hope for transformation at multiple levels including: better livelihoods for the employees, significant benefits to their external communities and models that challenge the assertion that there is no alternative to the market fundamentalism of globalizing neoliberalism. This case study also calls for a more critical research agenda in tourism studies. So far, the diverse alternatives to globalizing neoliberalism offered by examples such as the Hotel Bauen have been little studied within the tourism and hospitality disciplines. This may be for a variety of reasons, including: the uncritical acceptance of the mantra that there is no alternative to corporatized tourism; the growing influence of industry on tourism research agendas; and a lack of critical, political awareness in much of tourism academia. The recent financial crisis has provided an opportunity to rethink our research focus and examine diverse possibilities being explored bravely in communities such as the BAUEN around the globe. As Tribe (2001) has argued critical tourism agendas may contribute to the emancipatory capacities of tourism which will help found a tourism system that incorporates the needs of all stakeholders not just the interests of the powerful. In the wake of recent events, it is clear that the cultural pedagogies of cannibalizing capitalism narrow our horizons in undesirable ways. We need to explore alternatives that humanize our economic systems and the Hotel Bauen offers one example in the tourism domain. It is appropriate that this article close on the words of one Hotel Bauen employee, Maria Eva Lozzada, the President of the Bauen cooperative who on reflecting on a question asked of her if the Hotel Bauen was undertaking a revolution responded “it could be a good revolution for the source of work and for the future of the children—it is a process that one has to think conscientiously about what type of revolution one wants” (personal communication, April 26, 2009)

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