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The Cultivation of Taste: Chefs and the Organization of Fine Dining Hardcover – 13 Feb 2014
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Christel Lane has produced an authoritative guide to fine dining as a social, cultural, and economic institution with complex systems of support and deeply rooted national differences. We learn that taste is a contested terrain, where every culinary act reveals competing values, suggesting that the world of fine cuisine is no less complex than the world at large. (Sharon Zukin, author of Naked City: The Death and Life of Authentic Urban Places)
At last! A serious study of one of the most striking changes in culinary culture since the 1980s: the rise of the cult of fine dining. In an age of television chefs and cooking as competitive display, there has often seemed to be an element of spectatorship or even gastro-pornography in the publics interest. France has had its haute cuisine for centuries, but neither Britain nor Germany was previously noted for a robust tradition of high-end eating. Professor Lane shows that the British and German chefs are no longer simply following French models: their food also has local roots. Focusing on chefs and their restaurants that have gained the coveted Michelin stars, this book is essential reading for all who take a keen interest in serious eating. (Stephen Mennell, University College Dublin)
Scholars and enthusiasts will profit from this deft comparison of the development of contemporary fine-dining restaurants and their chefs in Britain and Germany which offers a thorough account of the multiple tensions involved in business management, working life, craft training, and aesthetic inspiration. (Alan Warde, University of Manchester)
[Christel Lane] is to be congratulated for having written a sociological study that we all can understand. (Petits Propos Culinaires)
About the Author
Christel Lane has been a Professor of Economic Sociology at the University of Cambridge and is a Fellow of St. John's College. Christel has been working on fine-dining restaurants in Britain and Germany since 2009. Visiting a large number of Michelin-starred restaurants and their chefs, she has published articles on this topic in the journals Food, Culture and Society, British Journal of Sociology, and Poetics. This work combines her long-standing interest in economic sociology with the sociology of culture. Christel's most recent books are Capitalist Diversity and Diversity within Capitalism (Routledge 2012, edited with Geoffrey Wood); and National Capitalism, Global Production Networks.Fashioning the Value Chain in Britain, the US and Germany (OUP 2009, with Jocelyn Probert).
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