Look Who's CookingThe Rhetoric of American Home Cooking Traditions in the Twenty-First Century

Look Who's CookingThe Rhetoric of American Home Cooking Traditions in the Twenty-First Century

Jennifer Rachel Dutch

Print publication date: 2019

ISBN: 9781496818751

Publisher: University Press of Mississippi

Abstract

In twenty-first century America, Home cooking has transformed from an overwhelming chore to a nearly avoidable pastime. This rapid disappearance of kitchen skills has led critics to lament the death of home cooking. “No one cooks anymore” is a rallying cry to get Americans back to cooking from scratch in order to improve health and increase happiness. However, this mourning for home cooking only serves to underscore its significance as a symbol of the importance of food to family, home, and community, which comes through in the rhetoric found in a variety of texts, including cookbooks, advertising, and YouTube videos. Analysis of these texts reveals that, far from dying, home cooking traditions continue as a powerful form of folklore that American fill with meaning as a representation of both the continuity of the past and the possibilities of the future.