Women’s Work

Ethics, home cooking, and the sexual politics of food

Authored by: Mary C. Rawlinson

The Routledge Handbook of Food Ethics

Print publication date:  July  2016
Online publication date:  July  2016

Print ISBN: 9781138809130
eBook ISBN: 9781315745503
Adobe ISBN: 9781317595502

10.4324/9781315745503.ch6

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Abstract

How is it that at the precise historical moment when Americans were abandoning the kitchen, handing over the preparation of most of our meals to the food industry, we began spending so much of our time thinking about food and watching other people cook it on television? … We live in an age when professional cooks are household names, some of them as famous as athletes or movie stars… . This is peculiar. After all, we’re not watching shows or reading books about sewing or darning socks or changing the oil in our car, three other domestic chores that we have been only too happy to outsource – and then promptly drop from conscious awareness. But cooking somehow feels different. The work, or the process, retains an emotional or psychological power we can’t quite shake, or don’t want to. And in fact it was after a long hour of watching cooking programs on television that I began to wonder if this activity I had always taken for granted might be worth taking a little more seriously.

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