Physiology of taste
The Physiology of Taste is a collection of memoirs. Memoirs of humor, in the heroic-comic tone, or how to treat familiar matters with a touch of nobility, a zest of pomp or solemnity. This could be tiresome, if everything was not bathed in modesty and gaiety. Brillat-Savarin is the most amiable author there is.
But it is about cooking. Brillat-Savarin inaugurates with genius this intellectualization of gastronomy which was not to cease until our days. He is a witness to the time when the restaurant, a place to eat, was imposed to the detriment of the inn, a refuge for the traveler without fire or place, where one could only drink and eat. Cooking became professionalized and every profession gave rise to discourse; sitting down to eat was a matter of language.
Beyond the need to eat, the pleasure of the table is like a staging: the luxury of desire. Desired food is a kind of ceremony by which man celebrates his power, his freedom to burn his energy "for nothing".
"In this sense," says Roland Barthes, "Brillat-Savarin's book is from beginning to end the book of the 'properly human', for it is desire (in that it speaks to itself) that distinguishes man."
Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1755-1826) was a French magistrate and writer. His Physiology of Taste, a founding text of gastronomy, has been a huge success since its publication in 1825.
Author : Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin
Collection : Champs (Flammarion)
Weight : 280 g
Language : French
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