Visitor Books and Guest-generated Discourses of Hospitality: The Case of the Hanok

Youngjoon Choi, Christine N. Buzinde, Choong Ki Lee

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


This study analyzes visitor book entries as cultural repositories of guest-generated hospitality discourses to understand how guests articulate/narrativize hospitality. Inquiry into visitor book entries offers insight into ways in which tourists render people and place intelligible. Utilizing textual analysis, this study examines discursive entries contained within visitor books displayed at a traditional South Korean hanok guesthouse/commercial home. The findings indicate that tourists' entries could be classified into three emergent categories: Structural Esthetics, Emotions/Affective State, and Inter-personal Engagement. Guests' entries indicated that there was an areciation for the display of traditional architecture, which facilitated sentiments of relaxation, contentment, tranquility, and homeliness. The hanok is thus regarded as a therapeutic landscape in which positive emotions are nurtured. Guests' entries also showcased evidence of genuine and personalized exchanges with hosts. This study points to the need for further theorizations on the role of indigenous knowledge in informing the performance and reception of hospitality.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)114-132
Number of pages19
JournalAsia Pacific Journal of Tourism Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • commercial home
  • emotions
  • hanok
  • hosts/guests
  • visitor books

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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