Mmm… Food


Week 5: How We Eat by Leon Rappoport
February 2, 2009, 2:43 pm
Filed under: Books

howweeat1How We Eat: Appetite, Culture and the Psychology of Food. 
By Leon Rappoport 

I was on a roll.  Enjoying all the food reading I was doing.  And now there’s this.  I finished, I didn’t give up (in past years, some of my entries for books start out as such… “Tried.  Tried Again.  This book just sucks!!! Made it to page 54.” Followed by a list of reasons why I couldn’t even make it through.) but I didn’t really enjoy.  I will attribute part of it to the fact that the book is shelved in the Social Sciences Division.  Perhaps it is the lack of pop culture focus that left me wanting more.  But no, I will take that back immediately.  This book wanted to be so much better than it was.  It wasn’t trying to be shelved in the Social Science Division.  Just look at the cover.  Look at the Headings “A Half-Baked Notion”, “From Myths to MacAttacks”, “The McDonaldization of Taste” and “The Road to Wellville”  It was trying to be the next informative guide to eating.  It tried and it failed.  I found myself lost amidst paragraphs that drifted from topic to topic so frequently I found it hard to remember just what it was he was talking about the page before.  And I found myself disagreeing with the book.  It just seemed out of touch.  Yet…  I found myself marking pages with items of note.  True that many of these tags were for items I strongly disagreed with, but there were some ideas of note.  The major concern is the lack to bring all these ideas together into a cohesive whole.  The author acknowledges that when he started the research he was looking for an answer and found a mess of information and no distinctly defined answers.  He almost tries to use this lack of easily defined reasons for people to eat the way they do as an excuse for why the book seems so disjointed.  My opinion?  He just didn’t find a good way to pull together his information. 

Don’t bother with this one.  It’s not worth the time.

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