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Comfort Food in Culinary Tourism: Negotiating “Home” as Exotic and Familiar

Comfort Food in Culinary Tourism: Negotiating “Home” as Exotic and Familiar

Chapter:
(p.126) Comfort Food in Culinary Tourism: Negotiating “Home” as Exotic and Familiar
Source:
Comfort Food
Author(s):
Lucy M. Long
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781496810847.003.0008

This essay examines the ways in which comfort food functions in culinary tours. Focusing on the American Midwest, it suggests that such tours offer occasions for indulging in foods that would otherwise cause concern or guilt. Furthermore, both comfort food and culinary tourism are social constructions dependent on the perspectives and experiences of the people participating in them, and both use “home” as a normative measure of familiar food. Culinary tourism involves a negotiation of the exotic with the familiar, and comfort food, because it typically represents the familiar, seems to be used differently according to the food culture being featured—as a way to make an exotic “Other” seem familiar; but also as a way to see the familiar differently, that is, to exoticize “home.”

Keywords:   American Midwest, Tourism, Indulgence, Home, Exotic

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