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Word of Mouth: What We Talk About When We Talk About Food (California Studies in Food and Culture) Hardcover – July 7, 2014


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Word of Mouth: What We Talk About When We Talk About Food (California Studies in Food and Culture) + The Language of Food: A Linguist Reads the Menu
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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Ferguson makes sense of the confusing current restaurant scene.  With engaging wit she reveals the tension between comfort and novelty, chefs and diners, informality and unpredictability.  In the twenty-first century, restaurants have tossed away the old rule book of haute cuisine but they have also created a new and often mysterious set of expectations and experiences.  Ferguson effectively cracks this new code. —Paul Freedman, Yale University

What is that noise? In this impressive survey of the ever-increasing cacophony of food—from the movie theater to the bookshelf to the tables of the world’s best restaurants—Ferguson explores how the complex dialogue of social norms and identity wrapped up in the way we feed ourselves has changed as our food culture has evolved. We aren’t just what we eat, we are what the stories we tell about what we eat mean to oursleves and to others. —Mitchell Davis, PhD, Executive Vice President, The James Beard Foundation

About the Author

Priscilla Parkhurst Ferguson is Professor in the Department of Sociology at Columbia University. After publishing on French literary identity in Literary France: The Making of a Culture, she studied the urban culture of Paris in Paris as Revolution: Reading the Nineteenth-Century City. Her work on cuisine and food started with Accounting for Taste: The Triumph of French Cuisine and has moved into an ever more comparative perspective.

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