Tapping the Critical Potential of Representations of Eating and Drinking
The introduction establishes the untapped interpretative potential bound up with food and drink and representations of it. An extraordinary nexus of post-war French thought that uses or is legible through figures of eating and drinking is identified, along with the new critical combinations which here provide a framework for re-thinking eating and drinking in four case-study novels. The conventional literary potential of food and drink is established, before introducing the contrasting novels which exceed those conventions. These are well-known, prize-winning works, all translated into English. They are self-consciously literary and differently theoretically-informed about intersecting questions of language, trauma, gender, class, race and global market economics. Chapter 1 is introduced as providing a flexible critical apparatus for the ensuing case studies and as a suggestive tool for re-thinking representations of eating and drinking in other genres or media. Optimizing accessibility, case studies can be read singly or severally (references to relevant sections of Chapter 1 are provided), and the novel, writer and any relevant critical material are introduced before re-thinking the representations of food and drink in each post-war French fiction. Thus, culturally-specific insights emerge together with a springboard for examining leftover interpretations in other forms of representational practice from other times and places.
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