It is time to place food where it belongs, close to our senses and in the territory from which it originates. National cuisine has undergone a radical transformation, from ethnic-based home cooking to distinctive haute cuisine. But in recent years the very act of feeding oneself has become a cult phenomenon, more of a discourse-based practice than a flavour-based one. Eating is now a continuous, exasperating narrative involving ethics, politics, economics, environmentalism, aesthetics and art. Even pasta is now part of that list of globalized, indistinct foods that have been removed from their original contexts, thus achieving both fame and artificiality. This new culinary Babel features Argentine meat in Singapore, sushi in Austria, Big Macs in Moscow and cappuccinos’ being sipped at the end of a meal.
Franco La Cecla used to teach Anthropology at the New Academy of Fine Arts in Milan and the Universities of Paris, Berkeley and Bologna.