Cultural omnivorousness has gained relevance as a suitable theory to explain contemporary patterns of consumption, but the actual dealing of omnivorous taste by economic actors and businesses has been mostly overlooked. Through ethnographic research, this article explores how Italian gourmet food truck operators concretely produce claims of authenticity for omnivorous seekers. First, the adoption of the perspective of food truck operators highlights the reflexive and market-bounded nature of the omnivorous taste reproduction. Moreover, “being authentic” becomes an imperative for tastemakers, imposed by the economic imaginary. Finally, the centrality of regionalism in the Italian production of authenticity suggests that localism, too, has been subsumed by global food imaginaries and that regionalism expresses a cosmopolitan attitude. Taken together, these findings allow the integration of existing theory of food cultural omnivorousness: “gourmet” food must be authentic to be recognised by omnivores and distinctive to be successful on markets.

Cosmopolitans of regionalism: dealers of omnivorous taste under Italian food truck economic imaginary / A. Gerosa. - In: CONSUMPTION, MARKETS AND CULTURE. - ISSN 1025-3866. - 24:1(2021 Jan 02), pp. 30-53. [10.1080/10253866.2020.1731483]

Cosmopolitans of regionalism: dealers of omnivorous taste under Italian food truck economic imaginary

A. Gerosa
2021

Abstract

Cultural omnivorousness has gained relevance as a suitable theory to explain contemporary patterns of consumption, but the actual dealing of omnivorous taste by economic actors and businesses has been mostly overlooked. Through ethnographic research, this article explores how Italian gourmet food truck operators concretely produce claims of authenticity for omnivorous seekers. First, the adoption of the perspective of food truck operators highlights the reflexive and market-bounded nature of the omnivorous taste reproduction. Moreover, “being authentic” becomes an imperative for tastemakers, imposed by the economic imaginary. Finally, the centrality of regionalism in the Italian production of authenticity suggests that localism, too, has been subsumed by global food imaginaries and that regionalism expresses a cosmopolitan attitude. Taken together, these findings allow the integration of existing theory of food cultural omnivorousness: “gourmet” food must be authentic to be recognised by omnivores and distinctive to be successful on markets.
Authenticity; cultural omnivorousness; economic imaginary; food; taste; taste dealers
Settore SPS/08 - Sociologia dei Processi Culturali e Comunicativi
2-gen-2021
27-feb-2020
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/1043528
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