As Barthes (Annales ESC, XVI(5): 977–986, 1961) effectively pointed out, food is “not only a collection of products that can be used for statistical or nutritional studies. It is also, and at the same time, a system of communication, a body of images, a protocol of usages, situations, and behaviors” (ET 1997: 21). This has become even more evident in present-day “gastromania”: not only do we eat food, but also and above all we talk about it, we comment on it, and we share its images on various social networks, thus investing it with multiple meanings and values that in turn mediate our gastronomic experiences. This phenomenon has become progressively more expansive, encompassing the sphere of nutrition. Going beyond the purely dietetic and medical domains, the link between food and health has become an unavoidable element of TV programmes, newspapers, magazines, social networks, advertising, marketing, and other forms of communication. Thus a series of food “myths” have proliferated, with evident impact on consumers’ choices and behaviours. What is more, the role played by media companies, marketing operators and various other public and private actors in the negotiation of food meanings and practices has further increased, pointing to the need for deeper consideration of the processes of signification and valorisation brought about by the discursive strategies adopted for communicating food in the political, journalistic, regulatory and even scientific domain. This essay investigates such dynamics by considering relevant literature in the related fields of research and analysing some interesting case studies.

Beyond Nutrition: Meanings, Narratives, Myths

STANO, Simona
2021

Abstract

As Barthes (Annales ESC, XVI(5): 977–986, 1961) effectively pointed out, food is “not only a collection of products that can be used for statistical or nutritional studies. It is also, and at the same time, a system of communication, a body of images, a protocol of usages, situations, and behaviors” (ET 1997: 21). This has become even more evident in present-day “gastromania”: not only do we eat food, but also and above all we talk about it, we comment on it, and we share its images on various social networks, thus investing it with multiple meanings and values that in turn mediate our gastronomic experiences. This phenomenon has become progressively more expansive, encompassing the sphere of nutrition. Going beyond the purely dietetic and medical domains, the link between food and health has become an unavoidable element of TV programmes, newspapers, magazines, social networks, advertising, marketing, and other forms of communication. Thus a series of food “myths” have proliferated, with evident impact on consumers’ choices and behaviours. What is more, the role played by media companies, marketing operators and various other public and private actors in the negotiation of food meanings and practices has further increased, pointing to the need for deeper consideration of the processes of signification and valorisation brought about by the discursive strategies adopted for communicating food in the political, journalistic, regulatory and even scientific domain. This essay investigates such dynamics by considering relevant literature in the related fields of research and analysing some interesting case studies.
Food for Thought. Nourishment, Culture, Meaning
Springer
147
158
978-3-030-81114-3
https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-030-81115-0_11
Nutrition, Nutritionism, Myth, Value, Meaning
STANO, Simona
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2318/1804165
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