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Fusionizing ethnicity as a journey from liability to advantage: A study of Vietnamese restaurants in Sweden
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Geography, Media and Communication (from 2013). (Geomedia)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8528-1099
2019 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Traditional ethnic businesses are often associated with ‘sweat shops’ – a token of low-quality and low-tech or as mainly targeting the ethnic enclaves and remaining foreign to the local population. Strictly speaking, ethnicity has been viewed as a disadvantage. The last decades, however, witness changes in ethnic businesses, relating to the expansion of high-tech firms or as a unique case, of high-end ethnic restaurants. This study explores the process of transforming ethnicity from a liability to an asset. For this purpose, we draw upon a case study of 10 luxurious, high-end Vietnamese restaurants in Sweden. Primary visual content analysis of home pages and social media is performed to understand how, and which, ethnic markers are used to express exclusiveness. Observations and ‘mystery shopper’ experience are used as supplement. As a theoretical lens, we adopt international institutional and immigrant entrepreneurship literatures and theories of production of space. The initial findings indicate that ethnicity is transformed from a liability to an asset through a distinctive fusionizing process. This process comprises of two sub-processes: (1) ethnicitizing of home and (2) homing of ethnicity. The ethnicitizing of home produces a space that gathers and displays the most distinguished features of the given ethnicity. The homing of ethnicity is the outcome of not only diversifying but also, harmonizing ethnic values with local values.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019.
Keywords [en]
Fusionizing, Immigrant entrepreneurship, Liability of foreignness, Homification, Ethnic business
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Human Geography; Economics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-74808OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-74808DiVA, id: diva2:1352694
Conference
Geomedia 2019: Revisiting the Home
Available from: 2019-09-19 Created: 2019-09-19 Last updated: 2019-09-19

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf