The Table Comes First
Family, France, and the Meaning of FoodBook - 2012
From the author of Paris to the Moon, a beguiling tour of the morals and manners of our present food mania, in search of eating’s deeper truths.
Never before have we cared so much about food. It preoccupies our popular culture, our fantasies, and even our moralizing. With our top chefs as deities and finest restaurants as places of pilgrimage, we have made food the stuff of secular seeking and transcendence, finding heaven in a mouthful. But have we come any closer to discovering the true meaning of food in our lives? With inimitable charm and learning, Adam Gopnik takes us on a beguiling journey in search of that meaning as he charts America’s recent and rapid evolution from commendably aware eaters to manic, compulsive gastronomes.
Baker & Taylor
"From the author of Paris to the Moon--one man's quest for the meaning of food in a time obsessed with what to eat. Never before have we cared so much about food. It preoccupies our popular culture, our fantasies, even our moralizing--"You still eat meat?" How could the land of Chef Boyardee have come so far overnight? And where can we possibly go from here? Locating the roots of our foodways in France, Adam Gopnik traces our rapid evolution from commendable awareness to manic compulsion and how, on the way, we lost sight of a timeless truth: what goes on around the table--families, friends, lovers coming together, or breaking apart; conversation across the simplest or grandest board--is always more important than what we put on the table. Gently satirizing the entire human comedy of the comestible, The Table Comes First seeks to liberate us from the twin clutches of puritanical guilt and cable TV glitz. It is the delightful beginning of a new conversation about the way we eat now"--