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Food and the Annales School

Abstract and Keywords

Food history emerged as a serious academic pursuit in the wake of a major reorientation in the field of history led by French scholars of the Annales School. Established in 1929 by French historians Marc Bloch and Lucien Febvre, the Annales in 1929 was a ground-breaking journal dedicated to historical and contemporary research in economics and sociology. Although the Annales is not solely responsible for the rise of social history, its founders undertook ambitious studies focusing on historical standards of living, material lives, demographic trends, and mentalities of pre-modern peoples, a research interest which typically addressed the history of agriculture and problems of subsistence. This article explores how the Annales School has shaped the field of food history by looking at three significant"moments": agricultural patterns and cognitive frameworks of pre-modern societies, food production and food consumption as a foundation of social and economic life, and the history of cuisine through a cultural approach to taste and identity. The article concludes by assessing the influence of the Annales School on the history of food outside of France.

Keywords: Annales School, France, Marc Bloch, Lucien Febvre, food, food history, food consumption, food production, cuisine, taste

The emergence of food history as a serious academic pursuit followed a major reorientation in the field of history led by French scholars of the Annales school. This change began prior to World War II and eventually took shape several decades later when a generation of social historians acquired posts with institutional authority. In a disciplinary shift that occurred throughout academia—both within and beyond France’s borders—historians turned away from the history of great men and began to address the history of society through new sources and approaches. Although the rise of social history cannot be solely accredited to the Annales school, its founders undertook ambitious studies of historical standards of living, demographic trends, material lives, and mentalities of premodern peoples, a research interest that frequently focused on the history of agriculture and problems of subsistence. At the same time, their research openly acknowledged the relationship of history to contemporary issues, thus breaking free of the positivist notion of an early generation of historians who sought to study the past for its own sake. This chapter charts the role of the Annales school in shaping the field of food history through a discussion of three significant “moments”: the first drawing attention to agricultural patterns and cognitive frameworks of premodern societies; the second giving greater weight and purpose to food production and consumption as a foundation of social and economic life; and the third lending interpretive depth to the history of cuisine through a cultural approach to taste and identity. A final section examines the influence of the Annales school on the history of food outside of France.1

The moment that gave birth to the Annales school occurred in the interwar years with the shift away from national political narratives toward topical studies (p. 4) that were sociological in nature. French historians Marc Bloch and Lucien Febvre established the Annales in 1929 as a ground-breaking journal open to historical and contemporary research in economics and sociology, and in two decades, the publication developed an international standing. With a strong commitment to innovative methods that made history more of a social science than a humanist endeavor, Bloch and Febvre followed the intellectual inspiration of sociologist Emile Durkheim. The energy, talent, and commitment of these founders soon brought them to the center of French academic life, and they held prestigious posts at the Collège de France. More than their collective enterprise, however, the journal’s influence as a “school” came from the examples of its founders who set high standards for archival research and broad historical inquiry that would characterize the Annales school for future generations. Bloch and Febvre did not espouse a single method or paradigm. Rather it was their own work that emphasized the psychological and cultural underpinnings of social and economic history, an approach that would later appear as the history of mentalities and led to the cultural turn in historical scholarship beginning in the 1980s.

The second defining moment of the Annales school took place under the direction of Fernand Braudel, who as successor to Febvre led its institutionalization at the University of Paris. Through the 1950s and 1960s, Braudel oversaw hundreds of historical projects on geohistory and historical demography. Most historiographies represent Braudel as the central, defining figure of the Annales school. Numerous historians in France and throughout the world have adopted his explanatory model that emphasizes the material foundations of civilization, conceptualized around geographic units and geological measures of time. He, along with economic historian Ernest Labrousse, engaged in the quantification of serial sources, particularly sequences of commodity prices over centuries. Both historians focused on the economic history of primary goods such as grain. Under Braudel the study of food became a significant part of the study of economic growth and stagnation, something best exemplified through food crises and consumer revolutions.

In the third moment, the history of cuisine emerged in response to the quantitative hegemony of Braudel. Historian Jean-Louis Flandrin, along with Françoise Sabban and Maurice Aymard, perceived the intellectual value of symbolic and social analyses of food as a system of culture. Focusing on the history of sexuality and the family, Flandrin’s early work was far more attentive to social practices within the household, and his methodology more closely aligned with social anthropology than with economic models. Flandrin, his students, and collaborators sought to explain the history of culinary practices, eating habits, and food regimes of various eras and civilizations through the close reading of cookbooks, literary sources, and medical texts. By the end of the twentieth century, scholars had widened their view of food as part of historical experience. These Annalistes brought greater academic rigor to the study of food and expanded the sources of information on eating, cooking, and shopping. The history of food and cuisine, too often relegated by the historical profession as an anecdotal amusement, had (p. 5) established itself—through the expansive scholarship of the Annales School—as a serious field of study.

Foundations: Bloch and Febvre

In the period after World War I, historians were disillusioned with romantic, national narratives and sought to understand the whole of society. In France, the most ambitious thinking came from the fringes of the French university system in Strasbourg, the original home of the Annales journal and its founders Marc Bloch and Lucien Febvre. Recognizing the narrowness of historical research on political leaders and events, they embraced a multidisciplinary and international focus with a strong emphasis on economic history. Although influenced by Emile Durkheim’s unifying vision of “a science of human society,” they rejected the heavily theoretical and deterministic models of sociology in favor of a more practical notion of history as “that of life itself.”2 They drew together a maverick group of researchers who had what they liked to call an “insatiable appetite” for interpretation, innovation, experimentation, and confrontation.3

As an historian of medieval society, Marc Bloch sought to explain feudalism through various social institutions by examining the distribution of property, social groups, and the form and functions of the state. In Feudal Society, Bloch portrayed the “rhythm” of society through a description of its customs and habits. In the opening lines of “Man’s Attitude to Nature and Time,” he wrote:

The men of the two feudal ages were close to nature—much closer than we are; and nature as they knew it was much less tamed and softened than we see it today. The rural landscape, of which the past formed so large a part, bore fewer traces of human influence. The wild animals that now only haunt our nursery tales—bears and, above all, wolves—prowled in every wilderness, and even amongst the cultivated fields. So much was this the case that the sport of hunting was indispensable for ordinary security, and almost equally so as a method of supplementing the food supply.4

Bloch’s ethnographic approach tended toward a rich description of the psychological and the material, as well as the social ritual and symbolic meanings of work and worship. Febvre, by contrast, pursued the relationship between the individual and the community with an eye to popular belief. He was interested in uncovering past ways of thinking and the mental tools that historical actors used to make sense of the impossible without falling prey to anachronism. His deepest convictions about historical method come forth in his approach to the history of sixteenth-century thought.

We instinctively bring to bear on these [sixteenth-century] texts our own ideas, our feelings, the fruit of our scientific inquiries, our political experiences, and our (p. 6) social achievements. But those who leafed through them when they were brand-new, under a bookseller’s awning on Rue Mercière in Lyon or Rue Saint-Jacques in Paris—what did they read between the carefully printed lines? Just because the sequence of ideas in these texts confers on them a kind of eternal verity, to our eyes at least, can we conclude that all intellectual attitudes are possible in all periods? Equally possible? This is a great problem for the history of the human mind. It compounds the methodological problem and gives it extraordinary scope.5

This passage, taken from one of Febvre’s later works, made the strategic process of historical thinking and research transparent to its readers. Bloch’s work emphasized the necessary engagement of the historical imagination for readers. Such was the didactic enterprise of these two Annalistes.

While seemingly opposed to past historical traditions, many of their calls to research across disciplines (known as enquêtes collectives) were inspired by the writings of earlier, nationalist historians. One such call for the pursuit of food history, published in 1944, simultaneously applauded the early work of Fernand Braudel on the “food revolutions” of the potato and maize, while beckoning the journal’s followers to reconsider the great Romantic writer and “Father of French history,” Jules Michelet and his reflections on coffee and the revolutionary history of France. Febvre claimed that “we of the Annales have devoted attention to the problem of food supply from the beginning,” the problem being as much historical as current.6 To phrase the pursuit of food in history as a problem was in keeping with the focus of the Annales school on interrogation and analysis, questioning what is assumed about the past. In another vein, the call pointed to the need for scientific approaches (history being one of them) to address problems of subsistence. With a growing awareness of poverty and famine in Africa and Asia, Febvre pointed to the need for historians to respond to the world crisis of hunger and malnutrition with a longer perspective that “recalled human reality.”7

The call for a collective research of alimentary habits, in the characteristic spirit of the Annales, solicited attention to a central historical problem that had to be explored in multiple ways. By raising the very question about the revolutionary history of foods, Febvre inspired a downtrodden nation in the midst of World War II. His originality lay in the “scientific volunteerism” inviting French scholars of all related disciplines, then under the German Occupation, to pursue a vital area of scholarship despite, or because of, the difficult conditions of the era.8 Febvre’s commitment to “cross-research” in food history would finally see fruition in 1954; while holding the Chair of Modern History and Civilization, he undertook the publication of a French encyclopedia “not of entries but of problems.”9 This unorthodox compendium of knowledge is neither alphabetical nor chronological; its conceptual structure embodies the spirit of the Annales school of history as social science. Its first volume, devoted to “mental tools,” offered a comprehensive assessment of the rise of popular beef consumption and the decline of nobleman’s game in early modern history as an illustration of the evolving definitions of standards of living. The fourteenth volume of the Encyclopédie française, dedicated to la civilisation quotidienne (everyday life), contains an eighty-page section devoted (p. 7) entirely to food consumption, with contributions from food scientists, demographers, geographers, and historians. The present became a template to ask questions of the past. In one instance, Febvre used prewar surveys to show how the western region of Poitou-Charente remained committed to lard, even though by the mid-1950s it had become the chief center for dairy production. In other regions, past preferences for butter over olive oil, for example, belied geographical boundaries of current agricultural production.10

The Annales school’s characteristic presentism, much more apparent in the early, polemical period of the journal, distinguished it from other history reviews. This attitude would also elevate the significance of food as an extranational concern of humankind, not simply to eat, but to subsist. Questions of food security, nutritional needs, and undernourishment would direct the Annales into its next era with the establishment and expansion of a leading school of history. In this period, the journal’s editors and its followers directed their interest in food history explicitly to the economic structures of food production and consumption and its conjunctures in moments of famine, agricultural crises, and food riots.

Institutionalization: Febvre and Braudel

The Annales gained institutional backing and research support beginning in 1947, after Marc Bloch’s tragic war death, when Lucien Febvre was elected president of the newly founded École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE), the VIe section of the University of Paris. In this powerful position, Febvre was able to reform the academic system in ways that clearly unified history with the social sciences through the powerful Centre Nationales des Recherches Historiques (a research center that Febvre directed for several years). Soon after, the VIe section gained the title École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS). Febvre also served as the French representative on the UNESCO commission for the creation of a Center for the Science of Mankind (Maison de science de l’homme or MSH), further assisting the institutionalization of the Annales School. Together with Braudel, Febvre built a network of researchers, teachers, and editors throughout postwar France, elevating the status of history as part of an ambitious federalist enterprise that built institutional structures emanating from Paris through the provinces of France.

Fernand Braudel supported Febvre in the administration of the Historical Research Center, sharing similar goals of historical innovation and an international if not global perspective of civilization. Even before Febvre’s death in 1956, Braudel became the key person in the Annales, revising the journal’s name with a new subtitle: Economies, Sociétés, Civilisations, which gave it a quasi-Marxist, structuralist stamp. Having succeeded Febvre as director of the EHESS and chief (p. 8) editor on the journal, Braudel became the undisputed representative of the Annales for more than a decade. Under his patronage, the EHESS and its close cousin, the MSH, grew in international stature—the MSH through Ford Foundation support that established grants to fellows from abroad and helped organize international conferences, research projects, and publications. Under Braudel’s leadership, the pages of the Annales were filled with calls to further study in outlying regions of France—both urban and rural—that had been overlooked, if not ignored, by previous generations of historians. With a burgeoning post-World War II population, greater numbers of students entering university, and the rise of history as a leading discipline in the French academy, the prodigious work of Annales historians was ensured not only institutional hegemony, but also worldwide recognition.

By the early 1960s, the articles published and books reviewed in the Annales had returned to “the problem of alimentation” as first defined by Lucien Febvre, but with a more systematic, regional focus on agriculture as a window into patterns of work and issues of food security, especially among peasants. A number of monographs emerged from different areas of France, the most renown being Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie’s study of Languedoc, first published in France in 1966.11 Annales historians, who had long been focused on the historical problems of food supply in pre-industrial Europe, looked to the most recent research at world organizations that focused on meeting the demands for undernourished populations in developing nations of Africa and Asia. Ideas of human geography and rural sociology emerged as key influences in the history of food, which gave rise to numerous Annaliste monographs in later decades that focused on food security, most particularly in Russia and China, where famine was eradicated over the course of the twentieth century, and in Africa where famine continues to plague emerging nations.12

As an historian, Fernand Braudel made perhaps the most important contribution to the geohistorical vision of the Annales school by laying out a unique conceptual framework that would become emblematic of the Annales method of historical analysis. He first established this historical model in his monumental work, The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II (1949).13 This thirteen-hundred-page tome described in rich detail the development of a world region through its economic, social, and political life. More significant for historians outside this area of specialty was the concept that would later be commonly identified with the Annales: the longue durée (“long term”). In his introduction, Braudel described the three historic levels of time, each moving in different expanses, which he compared to the depths of the sea, the tides, and the crest of waves. These levels corresponded to three interpretive fields: structure, conjuncture, and event. While Braudel did eventually mention the political events of Philip II’s reign at the end of the second volume, far more attention was given to the ways in which Mediterranean civilization was shaped by slower moving economic forces, such as the spread of technology and the development of trade routes. Later in his career, Braudel described the structural characteristics of dietary regimes that evolved over decades if not centuries with limited flexibility. (p. 9) These structural changes, like the ebb and flow of tides, could not be traced to single events; they reflected different rhythms of historical time. Braudel’s work demonstrated the value of studies of historical structures that moved at a glacial pace. In 1967, Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie made this metaphor concrete by publishing a history of climate in Europe during the past millennium that utilized records of crop yields to reveal a “mini ice age” in the seventeenth century.14

Braudel’s study of the Mediterranean world also offered a regional framework that became the focus for many histories of the Mediterranean diet. The basis of this diet, the trinity of wine, bread, and fish, defined the civilizations of Greeks and Romans through the early modern period. Massimo Montanari later traced the clash of civilizations and dietary regimes that occurred under the barbarian invasions of the Roman Empire. The confrontations between the game-hunting, nomadic, barbarian tribes and the fish-centered, reclining banquets of Classical civilization were finally synthesized in the stylized court dining rituals of the Renaissance, where meat and game took center stage.15 Regional food cultures also became the focus of much of China’s food history written in the past fifty years, not necessarily due to the direct influence of Braudel, although the Annales frequently published comparative studies, in some cases using Chinese foodstuffs and rice culture as a counterpoint to Western foodways. China’s long written history embedded in geographical administrative units and bureaucratic record-keeping also helped form the basis for many institutional studies of provisioning and food policy.16

Braudel extended his interpretive framework in the magisterial three-volume study of early modern Europe, which appeared in English as Civilization and Capitalism, 15th–18th Century. The first volume, The Structures of Everyday Life, focused on what Braudel defined as the “parahistoric,” a conceptual category under which he placed such material needs as food, housing, and clothing, along with the structural categories of demography, technology, and towns or urban life. Complete with maps of trans-Atlantic trade, graphs of price fluctuations for grain and bread, and illustrations of farmers and plantations, his richly detailed history of material life privileged the rule of things over the rule of people, further reorienting Braudel’s vision of human action and thought. For Braudel these material aspects of the past were central to the history of civilization; “only until now,” he stated, “had they been in the margin of traditional history.”17

Stated as such, Braudel may have overlooked the many accomplishments his predecessors brought to the center of academic debate. For in many ways, Braudel’s work was a continuation of the work of Febvre, who had identified if not pursued to the same degree the ways in which the material culture of food served as a window into the history of everyday life. But Braudel was less interested in mental structures of dietary preferences and more interested in economic structures of food regimes. In his detailed discussion of capitalist world exchange, Braudel included the labor input and the nutritional yields of primary foods such as maize, rice, and wheat, as well as the social and economic implications of new-found luxuries-turned-necessities such as spices and sugar, but little of the cultural meaning or (p. 10) symbolic importance of these foods. To be sure, Braudel spawned a new stage in the development of food history as a historical topic with greater diachronic variants than the synchronic studies of earlier food histories. Through his own work and the collective enterprise of the Annales, he sought to explain the broader repercussions that New World foods had over the longue durée, putting the numerous (and often redundant) histories of coffee, tea, and chocolate into a larger historical narrative.18

By 1975, the study of food had come into its own. Fourteen years after Braudel had issued a second call for an enquête collective (collaborative research project) to pursue a comprehensive study of food and nutrition, historian Maurice Aymard acknowledged that the call “had been widely heard.” Aymard pointed in particular to the studies on food consumption by Jean-Claude Toutain and Jean-Jacques Hemardinquer. Their exhaustive research established the primacy of grains in the early modern period as much as the historical tallies of the intake of calories, proteins, vitamins, and minerals.19 Yet even as Aymard’s review of the current field of food studies reiterated what had been proven about the minimal standards of nutrition in peasant societies of the past, he did not hesitate to undercut the findings of his colleagues by showing the great variation in the sources where the “available supply” could differ greatly from the actual calories consumed.20

Aymard recognized the need to classify data effectively and make “interpretive hypotheses” about the history of nutrition based upon minimum standards established by the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization. His call echoed the goals of several other governmental and nongovernmental world organizations that were proliferating at this time, many of which invested themselves in solving temporary and endemic food crises. The FAO and World Bank compiled aggregate analyses of macro-economic performance and agricultural policies, generating mountains of data for Asia and Latin America as part of the post-World War II push into development economics. Yet the study of food history both within and outside of Europe had encountered shortcomings in its method; in premodern Europe, as much as in Africa, statistics on agricultural production are the least reliable of aggregate economic indicators. Annales scholars pointed to the frailties of serial analyses of prestatistical sources and raised new questions to further refine the historical problem of subsistence in light of international focus on famine and the world food supply. The world food crisis spurred studies of food security in developing nations throughout the 1980s, often incorporating Marxist theories to examine the political economy of famine as a failure of western capitalism. Geographers and economic historians of Africa and China drew on the Annales concepts of “structure” and “conjuncture” to give coherence and logic to their analysis of food crises.21

Most food studies in the 1960s and 1970s, including the serial studies generated by Annalistes during this period, gave greater emphasis to quantitative findings about such things as average caloric intake rather than qualitative analysis of subsistence issues such as food policy, work organization, and symbolic value (p. 11) of certain food staples. This tendency to see food history as a series of statistical investigations had incurred (and would continue to incur) the opposition of other Annales historians. Even as far back as 1942, Lucien Febvre criticized this mechanistic view of subsistence, pointing to “the great tendency to consider material civilization like a group of objects and the gestures of man as like the natural acts.” According to Aymard, this “human machine” must not be limited to a balance sheet.22 What was needed, as Febvre, Aymard, and many other Annalistes would concur, was a greater understanding of the social institutions that shaped food consumption and distribution.

At this time, few studies joined the temporal politics of food with its long-term economic and social realities; even the Annales paradigm claimed the primacy of structures and conjunctures. Little was written about the rule of monarchies and local lords that dictated the lives of the vast majority of people living in Europe between the sixteenth and the nineteenth centuries, who were subject to the “tyranny of grain.”23 Not until the 1980s and early 1990s did historians outside France, such as Steven Kaplan, pose questions about policy and policing, changing the focus of food history from a geographic, macro-economic view of early modern rural society to a political, micro-economic study of eighteenth-century Paris. Kaplan’s research drew on the state offices of the Paris Parlement, Royal Procurator, and the monarchy’s Lieutenant General of Police, as well as the work institutions of guild bakers and flour merchants, all of whom were imbricated in urban provisioning. Subsequent agricultural studies in other areas of the world centered on subsistence issues as the raison d’être of paternal governments, employing Kaplan’s juxtaposition of the actual marketplace as a site of regulation against abstract the market principal as the emerging economic concept, foreign to the literal-minded premodern thinker.24

Beyond this critique of serial studies, Aymard also saw the need for new approaches that consider “the study of cooking in the widest sense, that is, the entire areas of food preparation.” To be sure, the journal had published a series of articles on the diet and nutrition of Dutch, Swedish, Russian, English, and French soldiers and sailors in the 1960s. Published in 1973, Jean-Paul Aron’s book on the diner (le mangeur) of the nineteenth century gave credence to culinary history as a “new historical object” in the revisionist movement of the Annales under Jacques LeGoff and his three-volume Faire de l’histoire.25 But Aron’s anecdotal survey of bourgeois manners and cuisine, as well as Jean-Claude Bonnet’s literary deconstruction of “the broad and multiform verbalization of food habits” in Diderot’s l’Encyclopédie, seemed to gain few followers.26 One monograph that did more to give attention to the history of diet than previous work came forth by Louis Stouff in 1970. His study of household food consumption in Provence in the late Middle Ages brought in new types of sources and offered a more rigorous methodology in keeping with the Annales school’s inclination for serial analysis. The regional study of market records and household accounts, in direct response to Braudel’s call, gave a clear indication of the importance of meat in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, and with it offered a close analysis of the quality (p. 12) of food consumption through descriptions of kitchens, the spacing of meals, and the order of menus.27 No doubt, the scholarship of Braudel and the Annales school had elevated food, no longer too banal for historical inquiry, as a discernable object of material culture and the focus of world systems of trade. Through Braudel’s work and his academic position, the careers of a third and fourth generation of Annales historians came into the fore, some of whom delved further into probate records and other sources to recover the consumption history of household objects such as cooking and eating utensils.28 Still others adopted a Braudelian world-system approach toward emerging markets and agricultural development, thus giving greater empirical weight to the social and economic life of New World foods.

Aymard’s call for greater rigor follows the critical spirit of the Annales that acknowledged the work that had been done while offering pointed criticism of method in order to gain a more complete understanding of the problem to pursue. His review also expanded the terrain for food historians and their interdisciplinary work with cultural anthropology by underscoring the importance of symbolic analysis of the meal itself. From the outset, Aymard recognized the cultural meanings embedded in diet, something he termed the “psychosociology of diet.” As he stated, “human beings do not live on nutrients but on food items.” This method, seen as a totally different approach than the macroeconomic that governed so much of nutritional studies, recognized the values, symbols, and rules that followed a certain alimentary “code.” It signaled an alternative avenue of research that was informed by the structural theories of culture (exemplified by anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss); this new approach aligned the components of human nutrition within a cultural system that followed a “dietary regime.” While Braudel had used the term “dietary regime” to describe food habits, it was clear that the Annalistes were reclaiming the “mental tools” (utilles mentaux) with which to pursue questions through the semiotics of culinary vocabulary and sociopsychology of consumption. Lévi-Strauss’s famous dictum, that food is not only good to eat but to think, would spur others to study food consumption as “a system of communication, a body of images, a protocol of usages, situations, and behaviors” in the present and in the past. Apart from Stouff’s early and limited forays into dietary preferences, few historians responded to the call for such interpretive studies of the meaning and practice of food habits without giving primacy to quantitative analysis of macroeconomic issues. Even as the journal cried for an cultural-anthropological approach to food studies, it would be another ten years before Jean- Louis Flandrin and others would employ these methods to break new ground in the history of food.

Under Braudel’s leadership in the 1950s and 1960s, the scholarship on food studies was instilled with a sense of legitimacy in the academic world, particularly in the areas of economic history of food systems and consumer society, and in comparative approaches of social geography. Yet while food—regarded almost always as an agricultural commodity—became one of the primary elements of material life, it was situated most often within larger questions of historical change over (p. 13) long periods. The importance of meals was clearly a part of a history of nutrition, but little attention was paid to history of cuisine as a cultural practice or “taste” as an aesthetic principle. Little was understood about the social organization of food preparation, food markets, and cooks or about the significance of ingredients that composed a meal. There remained many areas of food history to explore; the cultural analysis of the culinary arts had not emerged a topic in its own right.

Flandrin’s History of Taste and Cuisine

Clearly, much of the training and direction of food history under the Annales school focused on eclecticism and aimed to capture the environmental, demographic, and material forces that governed men and women through the ages. But how do we explain the lack of studies on consumerism and food markets, not to mention questions of food preparation that Maurice Aymard and others had identified? Apart from psychosociological approaches to contemporary food preferences by Roland Barthes,29 little work had been devoted to the history of taste or food preferences.30 One explanation for this oversight, suggested by Robert Forster in his introduction to the 1979 Annales anthology of food-related articles translated for an English-speaking audience, was that the topic was elitist. To ask about food choice was condescending to those who lived in a world with few choices, “especially considering that at least three-fourths of Europe’s population was close to the subsistence level from the sixteenth to the late nineteenth century.”31 The privilege of choice would not appear until well into the nineteenth century, and then as a bourgeois attribute. Yet even in Braudel’s work, the historical problem of food habits and dietary choices persisted. The most notable example was Michel Mornieau’s examination of the question of the historical resistance to the potato, a New World food introduced to Europe in the early sixteenth century but not adapted into the popular diet until well into the eighteenth century.32

With the journal’s self-proclaimed “critical turn” in the March-April 1988 issue, the economic and social structures that preoccupied many of the Annalistes would soon after give way to a retitled review, Annales: Histoire et sciences sociales, and a new wave of cultural historians. At the time, a fourth generation of Annalistes, led by Roger Chartier and Jacques Revel, reclaimed mentalités as a primary determinant of historical reality.33 Much of the new cultural history followed the literary turn in the humanities and its focus on language and metaphor. It also delved further into the study of culture as the interpretation of traditions, value systems, ideas, and institutional forms of human interaction. Suddenly the questions about the value and customs of private life became the entry point to the study of cultural practices and the formation of social identity. Jean-Louis Flandrin, as part of this later generation of Annalistes, would bring his anthropological expertise to this field, along with the semiotics of cuisine of Françoise Sabban.34 Philip and Mary (p. 14) Hyman’s mastery of early French culinary literature opened up the study of cuisine through a close reading of cultural artifacts: the cookbook.35 Historians were delving further into the meaning and practice of culinary history.

Flandrin first established himself as an historian of sexuality and the family and spent the last twenty years of his life pursuing new questions of human behavior through taste and food choices. He defined “taste” first as a bodily sense from which a person judges as well as perceives flavors that are both agreeable and disagreeable. But he also saw taste as a “tributary of culture, of social milieu, of space and time”36 that made it intrinsically historical. Drawing his conclusions from exhaustive research of culinary texts, historical dictionaries, and medical treatises, Flandrin charted the variables of food habits and culinary innovations from the Middle Ages through the eighteenth century. One of his earliest articles on taste, which appeared in the Annales in 1983, posited the taste for butter not as preference but as necessity. As a basic ingredient in classical French cooking, butter’s increasing importance in cooking led many French people to transgress its Lenten prohibitions.37 Elsewhere Flandrin argued that the newly discovered taste for “bourgeois beef” became the criterion of social distinction in the early modern period, demonstrating how the gulf between the bourgeois penchant for “gross meats” (especially beef) and noble taste for game and wildfowl had narrowed. Using culinary techniques to show the how the two groups came together, he demonstrated how taste became “an object of fashion and a creator of social distinctions, a pole around which new social groups were formed.”38 Through his continued pursuit of the reasons for particular tastes, Flandrin had proved that there was nothing arbitrary about food choices and taste preferences as they often expressed the values and inclinations of social groups if not entire populations of a certain period.

Flandrin’s writings built upon the Annales models laid out by Braudel and others, yet he was openly critical of the school’s propensity to quantify and its focus on aggregate consumption patterns.39 In the 1980s and 1990s, when historians were readily embracing the field of cultural anthropology, colloquia and seminars on the subject of food were proliferating. Scholars recognized how food history as a thematic topic opened up new ways to examine a range of crucial variables on identity and culture in a manageable way. They also broadened the field of food history, returning to the cookbook as a primary source for the analysis of food habits and culinary practices. In 1987, a conference at the University of Nancy on cuisines, alimentary regimes, and regions, featuring Flandrin as a keynote speaker, drew over thirty ethnographers, geographers, and historians. According to the conference chair, this interdisciplinary endeavor sought “to revive the area of alimentary geography” that had proliferated in the 1960s and 1970s under Braudel. But in this instance, the historical problem of taste and the cultural meaning of food choice appeared as the keystone to a varied and changing expression of food habits.40 In 1989, Annales historian Maurice Aymard, along with sociologist Claude Grignon and anthropologist Françoise Sabban (then the editors of the newly formed journal Food and Foodways), led a conference on food habits and the temporality of social (p. 15) life (le temps social), which brought together over two dozen scholars from various fields. In true Annales school fashion, cross-research among social scientists continued to interrogate the problem of how (in the present and the past) food habits structure and consume specific times of day, at work, at rest, and how people devote time in the shopping, cooking, and eating of food. Seen from multiple, disciplinary vantage points, the questions posed allowed nutritionists, sociologists, and time-study experts to further detail and complicate the study of everyday life that Braudel had sketched out over two decades earlier.41

During this period in the late 1980s and 1990s, after the death of Braudel, the Annales journal became less dominant among the French academy and other food journals were established.42 Flandrin served as one of the founding editors of Food & Foodways, conceived as an interdisciplinary, international publication on the history of human nourishment. The refereed journal continues to support the scholarly pursuit of food-related topics to elevate the stature of food studies in very much the same tradition of the early Annales. In collaboration with Massimo Montanari, Flandrin drew together a number of historians, geographers, archeologists, and sociologists from across Western Europe to create an impressive anthology of culinary history, first published in 1996, that extends from pre-historical periods to the twentieth century.43 The collection demonstrates the encounter of different dietary regimes whose cultural identity were shaped by religious, geographical, social, and national meanings. It also shows the consolidation of numerous fields of research devoted to culinary topics: archeological evidence from cave drawings, tomb paintings, and human remains, semiotic studies of ancient texts, the history of New World foods within the context of rising market economies, the infusion of slave labor in the mass production of cash crops, the expansion of food trades and the industrialization of food, and the cultural meanings that surround the economic and social triumph of such important consumables as sugar, chocolate, coffee, and tea, the rise of the restaurant and the history of the inn, as well as the McDonaldization of culture.

Throughout his career, Flandrin took an active role in shaping the field of food history. He developed a following in his weekly seminar at the EHESS, where students pursued food-related topics that focused on the history of comportment and gesture, and identified decisive shifts in culinary traditions and food habits. While acknowledging the more sedentary structures of alimentary regimes, Flandrin also broke free of the synchronic description in favor of more diachronic explanations, forwarding the thesis on the modernization of French cuisine, a significant turn that had allowed France (and most of Europe) to sever the ties of medieval recipes (called “receipts” and written by health experts) from their medicinal lineage.44 Flandrin’s thesis had given a new periodization to the history of food: the birth of the gastronome in the late eighteenth century. His own findings have been followed by studies of gastronomy as an historical phenomenon tied to the professionalization of the chef, the rise of the restaurant, and the elevation of cooking from royal servitude to an independent profession with claims to high art.45 (p. 16)

The Annales Tradition Beyond the Hexagon

The Annales school has left an imprint on many historians who continue to advance food history through means that further institutionalize this area of study in European-wide associations and research centers. In addition to the examination of cuisine and manners as part of food history across Europe, the field has expanded with increasing attention to the processes of diffusion and to cultural reactions of Europeans to “other” foods. The four generations that have contributed to the journal and built the school have published a number of monographs and edited collections on food history, inspiring others to do the same in their region of the world.

Food historians across Europe increasingly have collaborated in teams, following a tradition of the Annales school that gives greater shared purpose and methodological rigor to any field of historical study. These collaborative efforts, which draw participants to conferences on food history of particular conceptual themes, have encouraged the participation of scholars across national boundaries.

In 2001, a group of food scholars led by Maurice Aymard held the first meeting of the Institut Européen d’ Histoire et des Cultures de l’Alimentation (IEHCA) in Strasbourg, France. The theme of the founding conference centered on the historical identity of food in Europe, drawing on a range of disciplines in the social sciences to study cultural food practices as “alimentary ways of being” (manières d’être alimentaires) to identify “particularities and differences among groups” across Europe, and “to reconstitute the discourse on food that expresses sentiments of belonging.”46 This European perspective deliberately avoided national identities in favor of alimentary ones such as “a carnivorous Europe,” a concept drawn from Braudel himself. It also broke through barriers of historical periodization in favor of the Braudelian longue durée. This francophone organization, now instituted in Tours, continues to support and encourage European research in the areas of food history through fellowships for young scholars who use its research center and library, as well as through ongoing seminars and annual conferences in food history.

A parallel to this collaborative work in food history that is produced for the Anglophone community is the biannual colloquium of the International Commission for Research into European Food History (founded in 1989). Peter Scholliers has edited several of these conference proceedings, one on European cooking, eating, and drinking since the Middle Ages. This edited volume includes essays on topics from Norway to Spain and, taken together, provide deeply researched examples that engage in the latest historical methods of identity formation as negotiated practice. Scholliers’s introduction draws on recent social theories to describe identity as an analytical tool that points to “the precise role of food in peoples’ identity making.” In his own assessment of the field of food history, Scholliers (a Belgian) engages with Flandrin and others with aims to further the (p. 17) methodological rigor of food and identity. Scholliers’s collection offers a number of examples that give a theoretical reworking of identification from within historical sources and from without, even as the object of these studies remain bound by Europe’s own national boundaries.47

Much of the scholarship outside of Europe has followed Braudel’s global perspective that links the commoditization of food and the worldwide problems of food supply with the development of capitalism. As Braudel demonstrated in his three-volume study of civilization from 1500 to 1800, “the wheels of commerce” advance the market specialization of food trades and the shifts in popular and elite cuisine in an expanding market of acquisitive consumers. Braudel’s seminal work inspired the convergence of social geography and economic history. Immanuel Wallerstein, an American follower of the Annales school, established a Braudelian Center at SUNY Binghampton in September 1976 dedicated to the study of “world-systems” over long periods. Braudelian geohistory can be seen as an antecedent of transnational studies of food systems. Africanists in the last two decades have given evidentiary rigor to Braudel’s broad frameworks, providing detailed local studies of agricultural development and climatic studies of food cultures.48 Flandrin and Massimo Montanari have led other researchers into studies of food diffusion from the Americas to Europe, and the migration of spices and aromatics that link Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. These studies often look to broader patterns of social and economic change to chart the effect of these new culinary regimes.49 Others have concentrated on the history of a single food to chart its culinary diffusion and the commercial and cultural linkages between distant areas of the world.50

Historians from other regions of the world also fell under the influence of the Annales school. Enrique Florescano carried the French tradition of total history to El Colegio de México, one of the leading postgraduate institutions in Latin America. He received a Ph.D. degree from the EPHE studying with Braudel, Pierre Vilar, and Ruggiero Romano. Florescano’s dissertation examined the conjunctures of eighteenth-century maize prices, linking agrarian crises with social disruptions and ultimately the coming of Mexican independence. Meanwhile in South Asia, K. N. Chaudhuri sought to do for the Indian Ocean world the sort of sweeping regional history that Braudel wrote for the Mediterranean.51 Such works follow the Annales tradition in that they employ the same intensive archival research, the rigorous methods of quantitative and qualitative analysis, and the focus on historical problems to sharpen our vision of the past.

A Longue Durée of Food History

For nearly a century, the Annales school has addressed the question, “Why study food?” with a number of resounding arguments: (1) Because food is a part of the history of everyday life and therefore must be approached as an integral part of (p. 18) economic and social structures, as well as a key indicator of broad cultural practices; (2) because the security and safety of food has been the preoccupation of state leaders and household heads since the earliest civilizations; and (3) because the study of food and cuisine tells us a great deal about who we are and what we value as a civilization. Furthermore, Annales historians took great pains to find evidence that would allow them to answer such fundamental historical questions as the following: What did people eat and how did they survive on it? What role did the environment play in shaping diet from season to season, as well as from periods of dearth to abundance? How did technology, human capital, social networks, and taste influence dietary regimes? By focusing on large economic and social structures, by revealing the symbolic meanings and material realities, by problematizing the mentalities that encouraged innovation and preserved traditions, the Annalistes cast aside the singular pursuit of food history through its popularized “mythic origins.” Just as Flandrin reminds us, the history of food cannot be limited to the story of inventors of notable dishes and elixirs.52 But as the latest generation of food historians contends, the fact that food myths predominate among civilized peoples of the past and present must force scholars to examine them as the basis of identification.53

Over the past eighty years, monographs, theses, and conference proceedings published by MSH and EHESS and, more recently, by the IEHCA demonstrate the propensity for cross-disciplinary research investigations that have filled the pages of the Annales from its beginnings. These studies detail how agricultural products and regional and national cuisines were produced, distributed, and consumed, and make larger claims about how food shaped and was shaped by market forces, political policy, social hierarchy, and cultural identity. Such comprehensive approaches that present food as an integral part of the past could not have occurred without historians first posing questions as far-reaching as regarding the fluctuations of dietary subsistence among the peasantry or the rise of bourgeois taste. And such questions about the lived experience of the past could not be discerned without a broader vision of society and the forces that shaped it, as well as the written and physical evidence to recover the lives of people absent from the historical record. For these contributions to the study of history that made way for the establishment of food studies throughout academe, we must credit the Annales school.


Aron, Jean-Paul. The Art of Eating in France: Manners and Menus in the Nineteenth Century. Translated by Nina Rootes. London: Peter Owen, 1975.Find this resource:

    Braudel, Fernand. The Structures of Everyday Life: The Limits of the Possible. Vol. 1 of Civilization and Capitalism, 15th–18th Century. Translated by Siân Reynolds. New York: Harper & Row, 1979.Find this resource:

      Flandrin, Jean-Louis. Arranging the Meal: A History of Table Service in France. Translated by Julie E. Johnson. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007.Find this resource:

        Flandrin, Jean-Louis, Massimo Montanari, and Albert Sonnenfeld, eds. Food: A Culinary History from Antiquity to the Present. Translated by Clarissa Botsford, et al. New York: Columbia University Press, 1999.Find this resource:

          Forster, Robert, and Orest Ranum, eds. Food and Drink in History: Selections from the Annales Economies, Sociétés, Civilisations. Translated by Elborg Forster and Patricia Ranum. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1979.Find this resource:

            Le Roy Ladurie, Emmanuel. The Peasants of Languedoc. Translated by John Day. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1974.Find this resource:

              Scholliers, Peter, ed. Food, Drink and Identity: Cooking, Eating and Drinking in Europe Since the Middle Ages. Oxford: Berg, 2001.Find this resource:


                (1.) An enormous literature exists on the historiography of the Annales school. Most authors credit Braudel as leader of the school, but recent work by André Burguière gives greater attention to Bloch and Febvre. A. Burguière, The Annales School: An Intellectual History, trans. Jane Marie Todd (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2009); Peter Burke, The French Historical Revolution: The Annales School, 1929–89 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1990); Robert Forster, “Achievements of the Annales School,” The Journal of Economic History 38, no. 1 (March 1978): 58–76; Samuel Kinser, “Annalist Paradigm? The Geohistorical Structuralism of Fernand Braudel,” The American Historical Review 86, no. 1 (February 1981): 63–105; Troian Stoianovich, French Historical Method: The Annales Paradigm (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1972). A recent collection of essays on the Annales includes the reflections of the school’s leaders, as well as critical assessments of the journal by leading historians and the Annales editors over the course of eighty years. Stuart Clark, ed., The Annales School: Critical Assessments, 4 vols. (London: Routledge, 1999).

                (2.) Jacques Revel, “Introduction,” in Histories: French Constructions of the Past, ed. Jacques Revel and Lynn Hunt (New York: The New Press, 1995), 11–12.

                (3.) Ibid, 12.

                (4.) Marc Bloch, Feudal Society, trans. L. A. Manyon, 2 vols. (Chicago: Phoenix Books, 1967), 1:72.

                (5.) Lucien Febvre, The Problem of Unbelief in the Sixteenth Century, trans. Beatrice Gottlieb (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1982), 5–6.

                (6.) Lucien Febvre, “Alimentation,” Mélanges d’histoire sociale 6 (1944): 38.

                (7.) “Depuis l’origine, nos Annales n’ont cessé, avec des collaborations comme celles du R. Gidon, d’André Varangnac, d’Haudricourt, d’autres encore, d’accorder une attention suivie aux problèmes alimentaires. A l’heure où on se constitue, dans les laboratories, une physiologie de alimentation toute nouvelle: à l’heure où, dans un domaine que l’on vit longtemps et paradoxalement occupé par la seule chimie des chimistes purs, et peuplée des illusions de Berthelot […], les physiologists reprennent leurs droits et nous rappellent à la realité humaine.” Mélanges d’histoire sociale 6 (1944): 39.

                (8.) Burguière, The Annales School, 92–93.

                (9.) Lucien Febvre, ed., Encyclopédie française, 21 vols. (Paris: Librairie Larousse, 1935–40).

                (10.) Ibid, 14:85–87.

                (11.) Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie, The Peasants of Languedoc, trans. John Day (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1974). For a complete list of these monographs see Bartolomé Bennassar and Joseph Goy, “Contribution à l’histoire de la consommation alimentaire du XVe au XIXe siècle,” Annales: Histoire, Sciences Sociales, 30, no. 2/3 (March-June 1975): 402–30.

                (12.) See a review article by Jean-Jacques Hémardinquer, “Problèmes et techniques alimentaires: Un panorama mondial,” Annales: Histoires Sciences Sociales, no. 6 (November-December 1969): 1468.

                (13.) Fernand Braudel, The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II, trans. Siân Reynolds, 2 vols. (New York: Harper & Row, 1972–1973 [1949]).

                (14.) Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie, Times of Feast, Times of Famine: The History of Climate since the Year 1000, trans. Barbara Bray (New York: Doubleday, 1971).

                (15.) Massimo Montanari study of “nutritional regimes” synthesized much of his research of diet among the early civilizations of the Greco-Roman periods. See also his The Culture of Food, trans. Carl Ipsen (Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1994).

                (16.) See Kung-chuan Hsiao, Rural China: Imperial Control in the Nineteenth Century (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1967); Pierre-Etienne Will and R. Bin Wong, with James Lee, Nourish the People: The State Civilian Granary System in China, 1650–1850 (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1991).

                (17.) Fernand Braudel, The Structures of Everyday Life: The Limits of the Possible, vol. 1 of Civilization and Capitalism 15th–18th Century, trans. Siân Reynolds (New York: Harper & Row, 1981), 27.

                (18.) Jean Leclant provides an excellent literature review of the early works in “Le café et les cafés à Paris (1644–1693),” Annales E.S.C. 6 (January-March 1951): 1–12, which appears in translation in Food and Drink in History: Selections from the Annales: Economies, Sociétés, Civilisations, ed. Robert Forster and Orest Ranum, trans. Elborg Forster and Patricia Ranum (Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1979), 86–97.

                (19.) J.-C. Toutain, La Consommation alimentaire en France de 1789 à 1964 (Geneva: Droz, 1971); J.-J. Hémardinquer, Pour une histoire de l’alimentation (Paris: A. Colin, 1970).

                (20.) Aymard suggests as much as 10 to 12 percent in losses due to spoilage, food preparation, and waste, as well as the uneven distribution relative to a hierarchical social structure that would skew any classification of data. See Maurice Aymard, “Pour l’histoire de l’alimentation. Quelques remarques de méthode,” Annales, E.S.C. 30 (March-June 1975): 431–44.

                (21.) Michael Watts, Silent Violence: Food, Famine & Peasantry in Northern Nigeria (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1983); Pierre-Etienne Will, Bureaucratie et famine en Chine au 18e siècle (Paris: EHESS, 1980).

                (22.) Lucien Febvre, “Enquêtes et suggestions,” Mélanges d’historie sociales 2 (1942): 56.

                (23.) One important exception is Jacques Revel, “A Capital City’s Privileges: Food Supplies in Early Modern Rome,” in Forster and Ranum, Food and Drink in History, 37–49.

                (24.) Steven Laurence Kaplan, Bread, Politics, and Political Economy in the Reign of Louis XV, 2 vols. (The Hague: Nijhof Press, 1976); idem, Provisioning Paris: Merchants and Millers in the Grain and Flour Trade in the Eighteenth Century (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1984); R. E. F. Smith and David Christian, Bread and Salt: A social and economic history of food and drink in Russia (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1984); Jane I. Guyer, ed., Feeding African Cities: Studies in Regional Social History (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1987); Francesca Bray, The Rice Economies: Technology and Development in Asian Societies (Oxford: Blackwell, 1986).

                (25.) Jacques LeGoff, ed., Constructing the Past: Essays in Historical Methodology (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1985).

                (26.) Jean-Paul Aron, The Art of Eating in France: Manners and Menus in the Nineteenth Century, trans. Nina Rootes (New York: Harper & Row, 1975); Jean-Claude Bonnet, “Le réseau culinaire dans l’Encyclopédie,” Annales E. S. C. 31 (Sept.-Oct. 1976): 891–914.

                (27.) Louis Stouff, Ravitaillement et alimentation en Provence au XIV-XV siecles (Paris: Mouton, 1970).

                (28.) Annik Paradailhé-Galabrun, The Birth of Intimacy: Private and Domestic Life in Early Modern Paris, trans. Joselyn Phelps (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1991); Daniel Roche, The People of Paris: An Essay in Popular Culture in the 18th Century, trans. Marie Evans (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1987).

                (29.) Roland Barthes, “Toward a Psychosociology of Contemporary Food Consumption,” in Forster and Ranum, Food and Drink in History, 166–73; Jean Soler, “The Semiotics of Food in the Bible,” in ibid, 126–38.

                (30.) To be sure, Braudel and other Annalistes acknowledged the great shift in taste from the Middle Ages when heavily spiced food dominated prepared dishes and the seventeenth-century rejection of this cuisine. But taste as a conceptual tool for understanding consumer preferences and social identity was not the focus of these discussions. For early works on consumer taste, see P. H. Chombart de Lauve, La Vie quotidienne des familles ouvrieres (Paris: CNRS, 1956); Marguerite Perrot, Le Mode de vie des familles bourgeoisies, 1873–1953 (Paris: A. Colin, 1961) Stephen Mennell, All Manners of Food: Eating and Taste in England and France from the Middle Ages to the Present (Oxford: Blackwell, 1985).

                (31.) Robert Forster, “Introduction,” in Forster and Ranum, Food and Drink in History, vii–xiii.

                (32.) Michel Morineau, “The Potato in the Eighteenth Century,” in Forster and Ranum, Food and Drink in History, 17–36.

                (33.) Lynn Hunt, “Introduction: History Culture, Text,” in The New Cultural History, ed. Lynn Hunt (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1989), 6–7.

                (34.) Françoise Sabban, “Le système des cuissons dans la tradition culinaire chinoise,” Annales: E.S.C. 38 (March-April 1983): 341–68.

                (35.) They collaborated with Flandrin in a scholarly edition of the seventeenth-century cookbook by La Varenne, Le cuisinier françois (Paris: Mantalba, 1983).

                (36.) Jean-Louis Flandrin, “Histoire du goût,” OCHA Textes Exclusifs en Sciences Humaines [Online]. Available: [April 3, 2010].

                (37.) J-L Flandrin, “Le goût et al nécessité: Sur l’usage des graisses dans les cuisines d’Europe occidentales (XVIe-XVIIIe siècles),” Annales: E. S. C. 38, no. 2 (1983): 369–401.

                (38.) J-L Flandrin, “Distinction through Taste,” in History of Private Life, ed. Philippe Ariès and Georges Duby, trans. Arthur Goldhammer, 5 vols. (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 1981–1991), 3:265–307.

                (39.) J-L Flandrin, “Préface,” in Tables d’hier, tables d’ailleurs. Histoire et ethnologie du repas, ed. J.-L. Flandrin and L. Cobbi (Paris: O. Jacob, 1999), 17–36.

                (40.) Jean Peltre and Claude Thouvenot, eds., Alimentations et régions: Actes du colloques (Nancy: Presses Universitaires de Nancy, 1989).

                (41.) Maurice Aymard, Claude Grignon, and Françoise Sabban, eds., Le temps de manger: Alimentation, emploi du temps et rythmes sociaux (Paris: Editions de la Maison des sciences de l’homme, 1993).

                (42.) Food and Foodways (1989); Gastronomica (2000); Food & History (2003); Food, Culture and Society (2004).

                (43.) J.-L. Flandrin and Massimo Montanari, eds., Histoire de l’alimentation (Paris: Fayard, 1996).

                (44.) J-L Flandrin, “Dietary Choices and Culinary Technique, 1500–1800,” in Food: A Culinary History from Antiquity to the Present, ed. Jean Louis Flandrin, Massimo Montanari, and Albert Sonnenfeld, trans. Clarissa Botsford, et al. (New York: Columbia University Press, 1999), 403–17 and “From Dietetics to Gastronomy: The Liberation of the Gourmet” in ibid, 418–32.

                (45.) These include Jean-Robert Pitte, French Gastronomy: The History and Geography of a Passion, trans. Jody Gladding (New York: Columbia University Press, 2002); Priscilla Parkhurst Ferguson, Accounting for Taste: The Triumph of French Cuisine (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2004); Susan Pinkard, A Revolution in Taste: The Rise of French Cuisine (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009); Rebecca L. Spang, The Invention of the Restaurant: Paris and Modern Gastronomic Culture (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2000).

                (46.) Martin Bruegel and Bruno Laurioux, eds., Histoire et identités alimentaires en Europe (Paris: Hachette, 2002), 12.

                (47.) Peter Scholliers, ed., Food, Drink and Identity: Cooking, Eating and Drinking in Europe since the Middle Ages (Oxford: Berg, 2001).

                (48.) For an excellent review of the African literature, see Sara S. Berry, “The Food Crisis and Agrarian Change in Africa: A Review Essay,” African Studies Review 27, no. 2 (June 1984): 59–112.

                (49.) Kenneth F. Kiple and Kriemhild Coneè Ornelas, eds., The Cambridge World History of Food, 2 vols. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000); Raymond Grew, ed., Food in Global History (Boulder, CO: Westview, 1999).

                (50.) See, for example, Redcliff Salaman, The History and Social Influence of the Potato (1949, reprint: Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987); Marcy Norton, Sacred Gifts, Profane Pleasures: A History of Tobacco and Chocolate in the Atlantic World (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2008); Nikita Harwich, Histoire du Chocolat (Paris:Desjonquères, 1992).

                (51.) Enrique Florescano, Precios del maíz y crisis agrícolas en México (1708–1810) (Mexico City: El Colegio de México, 1969); K. N. Chaudhuri, Asia Before Europe: Economy and Civilisation of the Indian Ocean from the Rise of Islam to 1750 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990).

                (52.) Flandrin, Food: A Culinary History, 1.

                (53.) Bruegel and Laurioux, “Introduction,” in Bruegel and Laurioux, Histoire et identités alimentaires en Europe, 18.