Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Trim: 6¼ x 9¼
978-1-4422-4929-5 • Hardback • January 2016 • $45.00 • (£35.00)
978-1-4422-4930-1 • eBook • January 2016 • $42.50 • (£33.00)
Dwight Furrow is professor of philosophy at San Diego Mesa College. He specializes in the philosophy of food and wine, aesthetics, and ethics. He is also a Certified Wine Specialist with certification from the Society of Wine Educators and an advanced level certification from the Wine and Spirits Educational Trust. Furrow is the author of Edible Arts, a blog devoted to food and wine aesthetics. He is also the author of many books, professional journal articles, op-ed pieces, and magazine articles in publications such as the San Diego Union Tribune, Los Angeles Times, The Humanist, and Enterprise Virginia.
Introduction: America Discovers Its Palate
1 We Live from Good Soup
2 Why Food? Why Now?
3 Gathering the Tribes: Revolutionary Food and the People Who Create It
4 From Pleasure to Beauty: If Kant Was at Myhrvold’s Table
5 How to Read a Meal: The Flavor of Symbols
6 Can Tuna Casserole Be a Work of Art?
7 Habits and Heresies: Authenticity, Food Rules, and Tradition
8 The Future of Taste
About the Author
You don’t have to be a fan of sophisticated food to enjoy this often entertaining illuminating lecture on America’s current taste revolution. Furrow, a professor of philosophy at San Diego Mesa College, digs up the roots of Yankee cuisine, blaming the Puritans—for whom pleasure was restricted by dogma, and all cooking was dictated by the seasons of planting and reaping—for the dullness of most traditional American food. He declares that food is far more than fuel and nutrition: meals accompany all social life, and food can be so compelling that well-off foodies travel just to savor local cuisines. There’s style and substance in Furrow’s theories of cooking and composition on the plate. He casts a wide net to include middle-class consumers with a yen for organics, celebrity chefs, amateur food bloggers, Julia Child, TV dinners, specialty bistros, food trucks, and family-run farms. In chapters about reading a meal, the beauty of a tuna casserole, and the future of taste, Furrow argues that the foodie craze is in revolt against ‘a life that has become bureaucratic and digitized.’ In the end, Furrow makes a case for the taste revolution in a text.
— Publishers Weekly
What this books is, is a fascinating look at how the 'foodie' came to be and what we do with that concept now. Think roots in Yankee cuisine (pleasure was restricted by dogma) all the way to the new age chef prancing his /her way across the television screen declaring anything goes. [Y]ou’ll be challenged to look at food and those who creatively love it in a whole new way once you read this book.
American Foodie is a thoroughly readable and insightful book on the aesthetics of food and the role of taste in our everyday lives. Dwight Furrow makes the provocative case that far from being an indulgence of the wealthy, foodie culture harbors revolutionary potential to free us from the grip of the food industry by reminding us that flavor matters.
— David M. Kaplan, University of North Texas, director, The Philosophy of Food Project
American Foodie offers a thought-provoking and readable analysis of the extraordinary rise of interest in cuisine in the United States over the last half century. Furrow presents a compelling vision of the meanings that food attains, meanings attached to home, tradition, romance, and memory. Especially in his examination of culinary modernism, he makes a persuasive case not only for the aesthetic appeal of food but also for its standing as a form of art.
— Carolyn Korsmeyer, author of Making Sense of Taste: Food and Philosophy
This entertainingly written work brings the aesthetics of food up-to-date. It is a must-read for foodies, gourmands, chefs, epicureans, cultural theorists, and philosophers of art.
— Thomas Leddy, San Jose State University, author of The Extraordinary in the Ordinary: The Aesthetics of Everyday Life
"We think you’ll be challenged to look at food and those who creatively love it in a whole new way once you read this book."
— Linda Kissam, President of International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association