Location of Repository

Workplace Control and Resistance from Below: An Ethnographic Study in a Cypriot Luxury Hotel

By Leonidas Efthymiou


Luxury hotels are service workplaces with high aesthetic, emotional and affective expectations. However, from a critical perspective, hotel workplaces and their labour processes, including issues of control and resistance from below, remain relatively unexplored. Little research has directly examined the subjectivities, perceptions, critical thoughts, plots, interactions and responses of workers in both the hotel’s ‘frontstage’ and ‘backstage’. Therefore, consistent with the concerns of Labour Process Theory (LPT) and theories of aesthetic, emotional and affective labour, this thesis examines workplace control and resistance through an ethnographic study of a luxury hotel in Cyprus. A number of influences, such as employee relations, immigrant mobility and labour markets, seasonality and management attitude, are also discussed in relation to worker resistance or consent. Also, in seeking to contribute to a more detailed examination of resistance, this thesis provides an extensive A to Z catalogue of oppositional forms and practices. \ud My observations produced rich findings that revealed how a number of managerial strategies and mechanisms are in place to monitor, process and discipline worker performance. My evidence advocates that workers challenge the labour process through various forms of opposition, sometimes hidden and sometimes confrontational. Even though some resistance was fragmented by elements of consent, at other times it was challenging, effective and continuous. It also suggests that resistance in an organization can be mapped as a continuum and each practice should not be examined singularly or unconnectedly, but in relation to the previous practices that generated this practices, as well as those that followed. In this direction, even hidden and passive forms of resistance are important because they can produce an escalating effect that may lead to more confrontational resistance

Publisher: University of Leicester
Year: 2010
OAI identifier: oai:lra.le.ac.uk:2381/9742

Suggested articles



  1. (1967). A diary in the strict sense of the term (N. Gutermans,
  2. (1990). A folklore approach to emotions in work‟.
  3. (1990). A Ghost in the Machine?: The State and the Labour Process in Theory and Practice‟.
  4. (2004). A Grammar of the Multitude: For an Analysis of Contemporary Forms of Life.
  5. (1988). A phenomenological analysis of humour in society'.
  6. (2004). A Prison Diary.
  7. (2006). Accessed 22/04/2009 Czarniawska, B.
  8. (2009). Aesthetic and Emotional Labour.
  9. (2007). Affective Labour in Milanese Large Scale Retailing:
  10. (2000). Ain‟t misbehavin‟”? Opportunities for resistance under new forms of “quality” management.
  11. (1993). Alienating and Liberating Emotions at Work‟,
  12. (1995). All Quiet on the Workplace Front? A Critique of Recent Trends
  13. (1986). Anger: The Struggle for Emotional Control in America‟s History,
  14. (1922). Argonauts of the Western Pacofoc: An Account of Native Enterprise
  15. (2007). Association (ISA), http://www.ucm.es /info/isa/about/isa_ code_of_ethics.htm, accessed 15
  16. (2000). At the critical moment: Conditions and prospects for critical management studies.
  17. (2007). At the sharp end of new organizational ideologies: Ethnography and the study of multinationals‟.
  18. (2002). Below the breadline: Living on the minimum wage. London,
  19. (1998). Beyond Bureaucracy? Work Organization in Call Centres‟.
  20. (1999). Beyond happy families: A critical reevaluation of the controlresistance-identity triangle.
  21. (2008). Beyond power and resistance: New approaches to organizational politics.
  22. (1985). Body of Power Spirit of Resistance: The Culture and History of a South African People.
  23. (1982). Bravermania and Beyond: Recent Theories of the Labour Process‟,
  24. (1985). Breakfast at Spiro‟s: Dramaturgy and dominance‟.
  25. (2003). Call centre organising in adversity: From Excell to Vertex‟.
  26. (1991). Capital: A critique of political economy,
  27. (1997). Capitalism: An Ethnographic Approach.
  28. (2008). Capitalism‟s Cynical Leviathan: Cynicism, Totalitarianism, and Hobbes in Modern Capitalist Regulation,
  29. (1994). Career as a Project of the Self and Labour Process Discipline‟.
  30. (2001). Carriage with Compassion: An Ethnographic Study of a Welsh Ambulance Service‟.
  31. (1999). Challenging "resistance to change."
  32. (2002). Change the World Without Taking Power: The Meaning of Revolution Today.
  33. (1999). Changing the People: Social Engineering in the Contemporary Workplace‟. In
  34. (1997). Citizenship, Nationality and Ethnicity,
  35. (1984). Class at Work.
  36. (1975). Class, Conception and Conflict: The Thrust for Efficiency, Managerial Reviews of Labor and the Rebellion 1903-1933‟. Review of Radical Political
  37. (2009). Cognitive capitalism” and the rat race: how capital measures immaterial labour in British universities‟,
  38. (1999). Come, join our family”: Discipline and integration in corporate organizational culture.
  39. (2003). Communities of Coping: Collective Emotional Labour in Service Work‟.
  40. (1962). Concept and Theory Formation in the Social Sciences‟.
  41. (1983). Concepts of Culture and Organisational Analysis‟.
  42. (1973). Consciousness and Action among the Western Working Class.
  43. (2001). Consumers‟ reports: management by customers in a chaning economy‟.
  44. (1996). Consumption and Identity at Work.
  45. (1979). Contested terrain: The transformation of the workplace in the twentieth century.
  46. (2007). Contesting the Corporation: Struggle, Power and Resistance in Organizations. Cambridge,
  47. (1990). Cookers and Waiters‟. In Varnavas, P (ed) Struggling to Survive: Veternas Memories,
  48. (1986). Corporate Culture: The Last Frontier of Control‟.
  49. (1990). Crawling from the Wreckage: The Labour Process and the Politics of Production‟. In
  50. (2009). Creating, Connecting and Correcting: Motivations and Meanings of Work-Blogging Amongst Public Service Worker?‟. In
  51. (1992). Critical Management Studies.
  52. (1996). Critical Theory and Post-modernism approaches to Organizational Studies‟ . In
  53. (1987). Critique of cynical reason.
  54. (1998). Customer care in a consumer Society‟.
  55. (2001). Customer Service: Empowerment and Entrapment.
  56. (2001). Debating Labour Process Theory: The Issue of Subjectivity and the Relevance of Postructuralism.
  57. (2008). Decaf Resistance: On Misbehaviour, Cynicism, and Desire in Liberal Workplaces.
  58. (2001). Dignity at Work, Cambridge,
  59. (1991). Discipline and punish: The birth of the prison.
  60. (1987). Disciplining the Shopfloor: A comparison of the disciplinary effects of managerial psychology and financial accounting. Accounting, Organization and Society,
  61. (1987). Discreet Indiscretions: The Social Organization of Gossip. In
  62. (1998). Discursive formations, strategized subordination, and selfsurveillance: an empirical case‟.
  63. (2004). Doing Research in the Real World.
  64. (1990). Domination and the Arts of Resistance: Hidden Transcripts,
  65. (1988). Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844.
  66. (1961). Efficiency and Effort.
  67. (2003). Elaborating Analytic Ethnography: Linking Fieldwork and Theory‟.
  68. (1956). Embarrassment and Social Organization‟.
  69. (2000). Emotion in Organizations. 2 nd edn,
  70. (1993). Emotional Labour in Service Roles: The Influence of Identity‟.
  71. (1996). Employee cynicism: An examination using a contract violation framework.
  72. (1992). Empowerment or Emasculation? Shop Floor Surveillance in the Total Quality Organization‟. In
  73. (1992). Engineering culture: Control and commitment in a high-tech. corporation. Philadelphia:
  74. (1988). Engineering humor": Masculinity, joking and conflict in shopfloor relations‟.
  75. (2005). Ethics and Politics in Qualitative Research‟.
  76. (2005). Ethnographic Methods.
  77. (2005). Ethnographic Methods. Oxon, Routledge. (and accessed 12/05/2007).
  78. (2003). Ethnography and the Book that was Lost‟.
  79. (2001). Ethnography in the Science Museum, London‟.
  80. (1998). Everyday struggles at the workplace: The nature and implications of routine resistance in contemporary organizations. In
  81. (2005). ExploringResistance From a Rhetorical Perspective‟.
  82. (1993). Fast Food, Fast Talk: Service Work and the Routinization of Everyday Life.
  83. (2001). Fearless Speech, edited by Pearson J.
  84. (2005). For business ethics.
  85. (2006). Formulating New Social Subjects? An Inquiry Into the Realities of an Affective Worker, Online at: http://www.geocities.com/immateriallabour /dowlingpaper2006. html (accessed 16/02/2008
  86. (1994). Foucault, power, resistance and all that',
  87. (2005). Freeing Ourselves from Neocolonian Domination in Research: A Kaupapa Maori Approach to Creating Knowledge‟.
  88. (1999). From Banana Time to Just-In-Time: Power and Resistance At Work‟,
  89. (2000). Fun and Surveillance‟: The Paradox of High Commitment Management in Call Centres,
  90. (1984). Garfinkel and Ethnomethodology.
  91. (1988). Getting in, Getting on, Getting out and Getting back‟.
  92. (1990). Governing the Soul: The Shaping of the Private Self.
  93. (1995). Having Fun? Humour as resistance in Brazil‟.
  94. (2005). How objects believe for us: Applications in organizational Analysis.
  95. (2002). Human Resource Management in Service Work.
  96. (2002). Identity Regulation as Organizational Control: Producing the Appropriate Individual‟.
  97. (1996). Immaterial Labour‟. In
  98. (2005). Immeasurable Labour: An Essay on Marx‟s Legacy‟. The Commoner, 10. On line at www.commoner.org.uk/index.php?p=22, Accessed 22/10/2008.
  99. (2001). In
  100. (1987). In sorcery‟s shadow: A memoir of apprenticeship among the Songhay of Niger. Chicago:
  101. (1998). Indecent exposures: Theorizing whistleblowing.
  102. (1983). Industrial Democracy at Sea.
  103. (2007). Industrial Relations Code, Online at http://www.sek.org.cy /main.php?l1=5&lang= 1&cdoc=73 (last accessed 16/02/2008
  104. (1971). Industrial Sabotage: Motives and Meanings‟.
  105. (1977). Industry and Labour.
  106. (2001). Inside Organizations: Anthropologists at Work,
  107. (1967). Interaction Ritual.
  108. (2005). Interactive service work and performative metaphors: The case of the Cruise Industry‟,
  109. (2002). Interpretation-Appropriation: (Making) an Example of Labor Process Theory‟. Organizational Research Methods.
  110. (1997). Interpretive Ethnography: Ethnographic practices for the 21 st century. Thousand Oaks,
  111. (1992). Introduction: Skill and consent in the labour process”, in
  112. (1976). Introduction‟. In
  113. (2007). Justifying knowledge, justifying method, taking action‟.
  114. (1974). Labor and monopoly capital: The degradation of work in the twentieth century. New York and London: Monthly Review
  115. (2004). Labour Process Theory, Work and the Employment Relation‟.
  116. (2001). Labour Process Theory: A Commentary on the debate.
  117. (1990). Labour Process Theory.
  118. (1989). Leadership and Emotion.
  119. (1994). Learning the score: The duality of control and everyday resistance in the temporary-help service industry. In
  120. (2002). Looking for the good soldier, Švejk: Alternative modalities of resistance in the contemporary workplace.
  121. (1992). Managing the Shopfloor: Subjectivity, Masculinity and Workplace Culture.
  122. (1984). Manpower Strategies for Flexible Organisations', Personnel Management,
  123. (1979). Manufacturing Consent: Changes in the labor process under monopoly capitalism. Chicago:
  124. (2007). Manufacturing Empowerment? „Employee involvement‟ in the labour process after Fordism‟ Socio-Economic Review,
  125. (1980). Margaret Mead and the shift from “visual anthropology” to the “anthropology of visual communication”‟.
  126. (1982). Max Gluckman and the Manchester Shop-floor Ethnographies‟.
  127. (2005). Metaphors of resistance.
  128. (2005). Minima Moralia: Reflections on a damaged life.
  129. (2007). Modeling a Way of Life: Immaterial and Affective Labour in the Fashion Modeling Industry‟.
  130. (1990). Modern Organisations.
  131. (1987). Moments of Truth,
  132. (2000). Multitude: War and Democracy in the Age of Empire,
  133. (2001). Natives „R‟ Us: Some Notes on the Ethnography of Organizations‟.
  134. (1985). Naturalistic Inquiry, London: Sage Linstead, S.
  135. (2000). No Logo.
  136. (2007). Notes Towards a Theory of Affect-Itself‟.
  137. (2005). Ontology in Organization and Management Studies: A Critical Realist Perspective‟.
  138. (1998). Organisational Cynicism,
  139. (1978). Organisational learning: A theory of action perspective.
  140. (1990). Organisations in Society.
  141. (1980). Organization, class, and control.
  142. (1999). Organizational Misbehaviour.
  143. (1990). Organizations: A Bottom-up Approach‟. In
  144. (2005). Paradigmatic Controversies, Contradictions, and Emerging Confluences‟.
  145. (1993). Passion and Performance: Suffering and the Carrying of Organizational Roles‟,
  146. (1984). People and the Hotel Catering Industry. Holt, Rinehart and
  147. (1997). Performing the Tourist Product‟. In
  148. (2008). Personal discussion at the School of Management,
  149. (1994). Politics and ethics in qualitative research‟.
  150. (1986). Politics and Ethics of Fieldwork.
  151. (1987). Post-culture: Is the organizational culture literature dominant but dead?
  152. (2001). Power and positionality: Nagotiating insider/outsider status within and across cultures‟.
  153. (1985). Power and Resistance‟.
  154. (1989). Power and subjectivity atwork: From degradation to subjugation in social relations.
  155. (1994). Power relations and the constitution of the resistant subject‟ in Resistance and power in organizations.
  156. (2001). Power, Control and Resistance in “The Factory that Time Forgot‟‟‟,
  157. (2001). Power, Control and Resistance in „the Factory that Time Forgot‟.
  158. (1985). Problems and Strategies in Services Marketing‟,
  159. (2005). Psychoanalysis and Film Theory Part 1:
  160. (1982). Psychological Factors Related to Employees‟ Theft in the Convenience Store Industry‟.
  161. (1990). Qualitative evaluation and research methods. (2 nd ed)
  162. (1976). Reactions to Rinderpest in Southern Africa,
  163. (1989). Real Feelings”: Emotional Expression and Organizational Culture‟.
  164. (1985). Redesigning Work on the Shopfloor: A Question of Control or Consent‟. In
  165. (1993). Refraiming Human Resource
  166. (2001). Representing Customer Rervice: Telephones and Texts‟.
  167. (1986). Research Interviewing: Context and narrative.
  168. (2005). Resistance and Power in Organizations,
  169. (1994). Resistance and power in organizations.
  170. (2008). Resistance: Would Struggle by Any Other Name Be as Sweet?.
  171. (2009). Resisting Resistance? Moving the Debate On‟.
  172. (1996). Rethinking Questions of Control – Lessons from McDonald‟s‟,
  173. (2000). Rethinking resistance and recognizing ambivalence: a multidimensional view of attitudes toward an organizational change.
  174. (1958). Roles in Sociological Fielwork‟,
  175. (1988). Sabotage at Work: The Rational View‟.
  176. (2008). Service Work in the Hospitality and ... role of worker resistance‟.
  177. (1988). SERVQUAL: A Multiple-Item Scale for Measuring Customer Perceptions of Service Quality‟.
  178. (2007). Slantwise: Beyond Domination and Resistance on the
  179. (2007). Slantwise: Beyond Domination and Resistance on the Border‟.
  180. (2001). Social Anthropology and Business Studies: Some Considerations of Method‟.
  181. (1989). Social identity and the organization",
  182. (1979). Sociological paradigms and organizational analysis.
  183. (1994). Strategies of Resistance: Power, Knowledge and Subjectivity in the Workplace‟. In
  184. (1987). Strategy or Structure: Capital, Labour and Control‟, Work,
  185. (1993). Strength is ignorance; Slavery is Freedom: Managing Cultures in Modern Organizations‟.
  186. (2000). Stretching the Iron Cage: The Constitution and Implication of Routine Workplaces Resistance.
  187. (1965). Structure and function and primitive society‟. New York: The Free Press. In Collinson,
  188. (2001). Struggles for the Control of Affect: Resistance as Politics and Emotion.
  189. (2001). Struggles for the Control of Affect: Resistance as Politics and Emotion‟. In
  190. (1996). Subjectivity and the labour process: a case study in the restaurant industry‟,
  191. (1989). Sublime Object of Ideology.
  192. (2001). System of a Down,
  193. (1981). Technocratic Corporatism: Towards a Theory of Occupational and Organizational Transformational‟. In
  194. (1986). Technocratic Management: Social and Political Implications. In
  195. (1981). Terrains of Consent‟.
  196. (2005). The (Mis) Representation of Customer Service‟.
  197. (2000). The Aesthetic Approach in Organization Studies‟. In S. Linstead and H. Hopfl (eds) The Aesthetics of Organizations.
  198. (2002). The Aesthetic Economy: The Production of Value in the Field of Fashon Modelling‟.
  199. (1990). The alternative paradigm dialog‟. In S.B. Ortner (ed) The paradigm dialog (17-30),
  200. (1999). The ambivalent dynamics of secretarial 'bitching': Control, resistance, and the construction of identity‟.
  201. (2002). The appearance of labour class, and the formation of labour unions. On line at http://www.peo.org.cy/greek/ index.php?prod_id=10&subject=standalone,
  202. (1989). The Condition of Postmodernity: An Enquiry into the Origins of Cultural Change.
  203. (1994). The Consumer Rules? The Rhetoric and Reality of Marketing in Financial Services‟.
  204. (2001). The Contradictions of Service Work: Call Centre as Customer-Oriented Bureaucracy‟. In
  205. (1986). The Creation of Change of Organizational Cultures: A Conceptual Framework‟,
  206. (1992). The cult[ure] of the customer‟.
  207. (2007). The cynic‟s fetish: Slavoj Žižek and the dynamics of belief.
  208. (1982). The Development of the Labour Process in Capitalist Societies.
  209. (1944). The Dialectic of Enlightenment.
  210. (1998). The Extended Case Method‟. Sociological Theory.
  211. (2009). The Forgotten Factories: Supermarket Suppliers and Dignity at Work in the Contemporary Economy‟.
  212. (2007). The Future of Critical Management Studies: A Paleo-Marxist Critique Labour Process Theory.
  213. (1998). The German Ideology: Including Thesis on Fuerback and Introduction to the Critique of the Political Economy.
  214. (1985). The Ghost in the Labour Process‟. In
  215. (2001). The Global Diffusion of Customer Service – Reasserting Generic Barriers and Contradiction‟. Asia Pacific Business Review. In
  216. (1994). The Globalisation of Service Multinationals‟. Long Range Planning,
  217. (1990). The history of sexuality: The care of the self,
  218. (2001). The Importance of Being Aesthetic: Work, Employment and Service Organization‟. In
  219. (1957). The Joking Relationship in Industry‟.
  220. (1976). The Labour Process: from Fordism to neo-Fordism‟.
  221. (2003). The Managed Heart: Commercialization of Human Feeling, (20 th anniversary edition),
  222. (1983). The Managed Heart: Commercialization of Human Feeling.
  223. (1994). The Metastases of Enjoyment: Six Essays on Woman and Causality.
  224. (1983). The Nature of Work.
  225. (1989). The nature of work. 2 nd ed.
  226. (2005). The Organization of Resistance‟. Organizational Studies, On-line at http://privatewww.essex.ac.uk/~steffen/resistance.pdf,
  227. (1990). The philosophy of social research.
  228. (1997). The Plague of Fantasies.
  229. (2004). The Play Ethic: A Manifesto for a Different way of Living.
  230. (1993). The Politics of Organizational Analysis‟,
  231. (2005). The politics of working life.
  232. (1959). The presentation of Self in Everyday Life.
  233. (1911). The Principles of Scientific Management. Online at http://www.wissens navigator.com/documents/TaylorScientificManagement.pdf (accessed 25/03/2008.
  234. (1979). The Prospects for Social Theory Today‟.
  235. (1997). The Realities of Work.
  236. (1995). The role of interaction sequences and the timing of resistance in shaping obedience and defiance to authority‟.
  237. (1963). The Service Revolution‟.
  238. (1996). The Service Society and the Changing Experience of Work‟,
  239. (2008). The short overview of the labour process perspective and history
  240. (1982). The Social Organization of Industrial Conflict.
  241. (1994). The Sources and Limits of Resistance in a Privatized Utility‟.
  242. (1995). The structural embeddedness of resistance among public managers‟.
  243. (1936). The unanticipated consequences of purposive social action‟.
  244. (1989). The Whistleblowers: Exposing corruption in Government and Industry.
  245. (1994). Theorizing Agency: Power and Subjectivity in Organisation Studies‟. In
  246. (2005). Theorizing Contemporary Control: Some Post-structuralist Responses to Some Critical Realist Questions.
  247. (2005). Theorizing Resistance in Organization Studies: A Dialectical Approach.
  248. (2003). Three epistemological stances for qualitative enquiry‟, in N.K. Denzin and Y.S. Lincoln (eds) The Landscape of Qualitative Research, second edition,
  249. (1993). Tightening the Iron Cage: Concretive Control in Self-Managing Work Teams,
  250. (1996). Towards a Critique of Managerialism: the Contribution of Simone Weil‟.
  251. (1994). Towards a New Theory of Organizations,
  252. (1977). Trade Unions under Capitalism.
  253. (2003). Trolly dolly or skilled emotion manager? Moving on from Hochschild‟s Managed Heart‟.
  254. (1976). Two Comments‟, Monthly Review,
  255. (2001). Un)Willing to Resist? The Discursive Production of Local Workplace Opposition‟,
  256. (1992). Unconventional Practices at Work‟.
  257. (2000). Understanding Management Research: An Introduction to Epistemology.
  258. (2002). Understanding Organizational Culture.
  259. (2000). Understanding Research for Social Policy and Practice.
  260. (2006). Value-production and struggle in the classroom',
  261. (1980). Voting for Ford: Industrial Democracy and the Control of Labour‟,
  262. (2002). We Recruit Attitude: The Selection and Shaping of Routine Call Centre LAbour‟.
  263. (2006). We, and the past of our occupation‟.
  264. (1985). Weapons of the Weak: Everyday Forms of Peasant Resistance.
  265. (1998). What happens when the phone goes wild?: staff, stress and spaces for escape in a BPR regime",
  266. (2007). What is revolution?.
  267. (1994). Whistleblowing as Resistance in Modern Organizations: The Politics of Revealing Organizational Deception and Abuse‟.
  268. (1998). Why Employees Don‟t Do What They‟re Supposed to Do and What to Do About It.
  269. (1984). Why I Write.
  270. (2003). Work at Leisure and Leisure at Work: A Study of the Emotional Labour of Tour Reps‟,
  271. (1995). Work, Self and Society: After Industrialism.
  272. (1995). Worker resistance: an underdeveloped concept in the sociology of work‟,
  273. (1978). Workers in a Labyrinth: Jobs and Survival in a Bank Bureaucracy.
  274. (2003). Working at a cynical distance for power, subjectivity and resistance.
  275. (1988). Working Lives in Catering.
  276. (2004). Workplace resistance in an Irish call centre: slammin‟,
  277. (1995). Workplace Resistance in Western Europe‟.
  278. Workplaces and Workers: The Contemporary Experience‟.
  279. (1988). Works and Live: The Anthropologist as Author,
  280. (1986). Writing Culture: The poetics and the politics of ethnography.
  281. (2004). Ya Basta!: 10 Years of the Zapatista Uprising Writings of Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos,
  282. (1988). You asked for it: Christmas at the bosses‟ expense‟.
  283. (1990). You Just Don‟t Understand: Women and Men in Conversation.

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.