Moments of Hospitality: Rethinking Hospital Meals through a Nonrepresentational Approach

Lise Justesen, Szilvia Gyimóthy, Bent E. Mikkelsen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Hospital meals have increasingly become part of the political and scientific agenda of the welfare discussions in Denmark and other European countries. This article employs non-representational theory to analyse hospitalityscapes in order to explore opportunities for adding value to the hospital meal experience. By drawing on research carried out in two Danish hospital wards, this article explores how hospitalityscapes are socio-materially constructed. The research strategy was based on performative participant observations, visual ethnography and semi-structured interviews. The empirical data reveal how the daily atmosphere could be changed by social activities such as a dancing nurse, or through artefacts such as meatballs or napkins in disruptive micro-events, creating a possibility for different hospitalityscapes manifested in cultural, humorous or social performances. The article suggests that a focus on disruptive micro-events might create opportunities for hospitalityscapes and add value to future hospital meal experiences.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHospitality and Society
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)231-248
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Atmospheres
  • Hospital meal experiences
  • Hospital meals
  • Hospitalityscapes
  • Micro-events
  • Non-representational theory

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