Eating Culture

Edited by Ron Scapp & Brian Seitz

Subjects: Food
Paperback : 9780791438602, 312 pages, July 1998
Hardcover : 9780791438596, 312 pages, August 1998

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Table of contents

Ron Scapp and Brian Seitz

1. Hunger as Ideology
Susan Bordo

2. "GET FAT, Don't Die!": Eating and AIDS in Gay Men's Culture
Steven F. Kruger

3. Eating Animals
Carol J. Adams

4. Eating Out: Voluptuosity for Dessert
David Farrell Krell

5. Only Food
Marianna Beck

6. The Careers of Chefs
Priscilla Parkhurst Ferguson and Sharon Zukin

7. A Place at the Counter: The Onus of Oneness
Mary Lukanuski

8. Appetite
Alphonso Lingis

9. Untitled Artists' Projects by Janine Antoni, Ben Kinmont, Rirkrit Tiravanija
Laura Trippi

10. Edible Architecture, Cannibal Architecture
Allen S. Weiss

11. Food, Health, and Native-American Farming and Gathering
Gary Paul Nabhan

12. Eating the Other: Desire and Resistance
bell hooks

13. Dining Out: The Hyperactivity of Appetite
Joanne Finkelstein

14. Feeding the Audience: Food, Feminism, and Performance Art
Deborah R. Geis

15. A Supper Party
Diana Fuss

16. A Postcard History of the U. S. Restaurant
Jeff Weinstein

17. Soul Food: Where the Chitterling Hits the (Primal) Pan
Doris Witt

18. "Fable Number One": Some Myths about Consumption
Ed Schiffer

19. Bubbie's Challah
Stephen Steinberg


Explores the relationship between eating and culture from a variety of perspectives, including anthropology, sociology, philosophy, gender studies, race studies, architecture, and AIDS discourse.


Eating has never been simple, and contemporary eating practices seem more complicated than ever, demanding a multidimensional analysis that strives not for a reductive overview but for a complex understanding. Eating Culture offers a number of diverse outlooks on some of the prominent practices and issues associated with the domain of eating in contemporary culture. Lavishly illustrated with nineteen photographs and eleven historical postcards, the book brings to bear contemporary, interdisciplinary thinking on a topic that has been widely but not critically discussed in the media.

[Contributors include Carol Adams, Marianna Beck, Susan Bordo, Priscilla Ferguson, Joanne Finkelstein, Dianna Fuss, Deborah R. Geis, bell hooks, David F. Krell, Steven F. Kruger, Alfonso Lingis, Mary Lukanuski, Gary Paul Nabhan, Ed Schiffer, Stephen Steinberg, Jeff Weinstein, Allen S. Weiss, Doris S. Witt, and Sharon Zukin. ]

Ron Scapp is Director of the Graduate Program in Urban and Multicultural Education at the College of Mount Saint Vincent, The Bronx, where he teaches education and philosophy. Brian Seitz teaches philosophy at Babson College, and is the author of The Trace of Political Representation, also published by SUNY Press.


"The probing and finely detailed analyses of contemporary eating practices provided by Eating Culture make it an important contribution to contemporary cultural studies. Although the book takes as its subject a topic of obvious significance both to the general public and to specialists, I am aware of no comparable study of eating practices. (The related studies in existence are, by comparison, dated. ) Eating Culture breaks new ground in approaching a central aspect of contemporary life with exemplary sophistication, subtlety, and wit. One of the collection's chief merits is its inclusiveness: the selections approach the general topic from widely divergent political and philosophical perspectives. Eating Culture is a fascinating read. " — Kathleen Brogan, Wellesley College

"I am tempted to call this volume a real smorgasbord of reflection on the question of the relationship between eating and culture, but as I've learned from reading these essays, there are probably all sorts of racist, sexist, and classist assumptions informing this seemingly innocent analogy, so I'll simply say that this volume presents some of the most thoughtful and savory work I've ever read on the subject. This volume has made me reflect upon the everyday act of eating in truly unexpected ways; one doesn't eat out, or even at home, in exactly the same way after reading Eating Culture. "—Michael Naas, DePaul University