Reading Australian Colonial Hospitality: A Simple Recipe
Purpose - This research paper aims to report on the findings of an innovative study to extract contemporaneous interpretations of Australian colonial domestic hospitality in Mrs. Lance Rawson's Cookery Book and Household Hints. Design/methodology/approach - To dialogue with the text's original author, as free of time and space permutations as possible a hermeneutical approach is adopted. Hermeneutics has been successfully applied as an interpretative tool, to a range of tradition laden significant texts as it assists in the (constructive) deconstruction of texts so that the reader may use them as a portal into the past (its values and assumptions). Findings - The findings of these textual analyses present a number of themes: the embedded notion of host/guest relations, especially as it transpires in "the bush"; the earliest impacts of indigenous and ethnic minorities on food production, its consumption and hence private hospitality; and evidence of a range of issues concerned with the management of a household. An Australian hospitality is also explored. Research limitations/implications - Just as researchers have sought to identify an antipodean cuisine, this paper is a launch for understanding the origins of colonial hospitality, albeit from a private perspective. Practical implications - The findings might assist the Australian hospitality industry in developing a regional service culture. Originality/value - This paper contributes to emerging studies in hospitality, by deconstructing a colonial cookbook, via the medium of textual analysis, and underpinned by a hermeneutic interpretative paradigm.
International Journal of Culture, Tourism and Hospitality Research