chapter  14
18 Pages

Film, Food, arid "La Francité": From le pain quotidien to McDo

Official and unofficial expressions of concern over the devalued status of gastronomy in contemporary France underscore the important role cuisine


has played in defining French culture. As Priscilla Clark has noted, "If every country has a culinary tradition, in France as nowhere else that tradition has become a national symbol of prestige, the incarnation of French civilization" (33). For Clark, the rules and regulations of French cuisine, established over a long history of internationally recognized dominance in the culinary field, have come to constitute a sort of code civil, transforming the preparation and consuming of food into an aesthetic and spiritual activity, a ritual whose meaning is closely tied to the French concept of national identity.