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The Taste for Civilization


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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements; Introduction; Civility, Civil Society and Democracy; Political Theory: Where's the Household in Civil Society?; Empirical Studies: It's Hard to Measure the Table; The Art of Conversation and Civic Virtues of Thoughtfulness and Generosity; Meals, Conversations and Women; What Changes are Needed?; Part One: Household Foodwork; Chapter 1: The Time Crunch; Farm and City Foodwork; Women's Labor Force Participation and Overworked Americans; Technology and Food Tasks; The Second Shift and the Globalization of Housework; Invisible Foodwork; Solutions to the Time Crunch; Chapter 2: Domesticity: Meals, Obligation and Gratitude; Political and Gendered Domesticity; Deciding on the Menu: Household Variations; Gift, Obligation and the Economy of Gratitude; Psychological Memories and Social Connections; Escape from the Household with Commercial Food; Chapter 3: American Food; American Food as Multi-Ethnic and Regional Corporations Urge Immigrants to Eat American; Racial and Ethnic Pride in Foodways; The Slow Food Movement; American foodways, the Obesity Crisis and Global Warming; Part Two: Table Conversation; Chapter 4: Conversation and Manners; Conversations and Civility; Civil Society: Light Social Conversations and Heavy Political Arguments; The Lost Art of Conversation in the United States; Upper Class and Feminine: Courtesy, Civility, Politeness and Manners; The Universality of Table Manners; Manners and the Middle Class

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From table talk to farmers' markets, analyzing the cultural politics of what and how we eat

About the Author

Janet A. Flammang is a professor and the chair of political science at Santa Clara University and the author of Women's Political Voice: How Women are Transforming the Practice and Study of Politics and other works.


"Deftly bringing together political theory, feminist analysis, and cultural studies, Flammang uses the familiar world of our private lives and everyday practices with food to interrogate the public life of American democracy and civil society. Thoughtful and creative." Anna Sampaio, coeditor of Transnational Latina/o Communities: Politics, Processes, and Cultures

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