The Sociomateriality of Cooking. The Practice Turn in Contemporary Food Studies

Lorenzo Domaneschi

Abstract


The paper present the so-called “practice turn in contemporary theory” and its possible and profitable sociological application to the field of food studies. Starting from the epistemological perspective that sees the concept of practice as the ongoing arrangement resulting from the social organization between different elements, I present a brief critical review of the research works about food culture that has drawn on a practice-based approach, in order to show how it affords to move from a “sociology of food” to a “sociology of food social practices”. Then, I discuss one particular approach offered by theories of practice, based on the category of “sociomateriality”. Finally, I briefly introduce, by way of example, the empirical analysis of the practice of professional cooking to show the potentiality of this approach. In conclusion, I will discuss the strengths and the vulnerabilities related to the analysis of food social practices, focusing in particular on the issue of symbolic power.

Keywords


Practice theory; Sociology of food; Culinary culture; Sociomateriality; Habitus; Ethnography; Symbolic power

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DOI: 10.6092/issn.1971-8853/9477

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