Consumer Culture Matters: Insights From Contemporary Representations of Cooking

Hewer Paul, Stirling University, Scotland
Brownlie Douglas, Stirling University, Scotland
This paper sets out to explore the potential contribution of a turn to cookbooks for enriching our understanding of the character of consumer culture. We build a line of argument that positions culture as text and representations of culture as situated inscriptions. Commensurate with this argument, it develops an analytical framework based on the study of culinary texts as placed cultural artefacts, suggesting that this approach is largely neglected by consumer researchers but offers rich scope for broadening the way we read consumer culture. It argues that cookbooks should be read as situated cultural products, as constructed social forms which are amenable to textual analysis. In this respect it declares that, rather than simply being understood as reflections of contemporary consumer culture, cookbooks should be understood as artefacts of consumer culture in the making, texts which speak of magical cultural tales of transformation and re-enchantment.
[ to cite ]:
Hewer Paul and Brownlie Douglas (2007) ,"Consumer Culture Matters: Insights From Contemporary Representations of Cooking", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 34, eds. Gavan Fitzsimons and Vicki Morwitz, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 175-179.