Tony Mirabelli Learning To Serve Analysis

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In Tony Mirabelli’s writing, “Learning to Serve”, Mirabelli completes an ethnographic study of the service industry. Mirabelli writes on a topic he is quite familiar with, being a waiter. Mirabelli discusses the complexity of being a waiter, although most of these complexities are unknown to people outside of the discourse community. Mirabelli uses his ethnographic study to undermine criticism towards waiters. The main critique Mirabelli rebuts in his writing is that being a waiter does not require skill. Mirabelli uses examples from his own experiences, as well as his research to show that this claim is not true. Through his writing, he displays the communication skills and knowledge it takes to be a waiter. Mirabelli is also able to portray…show more content…
Mirabelli uses example to show the inaccuracies of this claim. The first example Mirabelli presents is the skill it takes to memorize an entire menu. A waiter must memorize the entire menu, as well as have a full understanding of the menu. Mirabelli provides the reader with an example of what happens when the waiter does not have a full understanding of the menu. “Harvey then told me that a customer had asked him about the sauce, and since he could not explain what it was, the customer did not order it” (Mirabelli 150). In this example, Mirabelli illustrates the effect an unskilled and unknowledgeable waiter has. Harvey was a new waiter and was unaware of what a pesto sauce was. This resulted in him not being able to provide the customer with a valid response. This example is able to negate the criticism and prove that waiters do need skill in order to do their job…show more content…
Mirabelli helped me decide what discourse community I want to study. Like Mirabelli, I am going to study a discourse community that I was a part of. After reading the extensive knowledge Mirabelli had on the community, I realized it aided his ethnographic study. Without prior knowledge of the community, an ethnographic study is harder to complete. I also noticed the passion Mirabelli had for the discourse community he studied. I realized that having this passion makes the research easier to complete and the writing more effective. I decided to do an ethnographic study on my high school. The high school I graduated from is not a normal high school. The school has fewer than two hundred kids and has many foreign students. I have a lot of passion for the school and have access to resources needed to complete the study. Mirabelli illustrated the importance of having passion and prior knowledge. For this reason, I decided to study a community that I have knowledge and passion

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