The novel goes through five distinct stages:
Introduction This thesis is about food, the need for which defines a common humanity.
Food is a substance at once profane and sacred. It is the very basis of material existence without which the human organism cannot survive for more than a few weeks. Yet food is also a culturally and spiritually powerful substance that mediates human relationships and understanding of the world and that is at the heart of interactions with what humans designate as the divine.
This contention that food can best be understood not only as a material fact but also as a cultural and spiritual phenomenon is central to my thesis.
At the same time it is important not to lose sight of what distinguishes food from other material and cultural commodities: My aim is to explore this dual cultural and spiritual meaning by examining one aspect of the relationship between food and religion.
Taking to heart Foucault's dictum that diet is the product of not only medical but also religious discourse on the body, I ask what consequences religious ethical systems have for thinking about food and for shaping food choices Foucault My thesis argues that religious-ethical systems are determinative for food choices and food rituals, and reciprocally, that food plays a constitutive role in shaping a tradition's religious-ethical system, its rules of conduct, ethical principles and worldviews.
Firstly, there has been little written about food in this religious tradition. This bridging may, in turn, suggest a new basis on which to think about food as a human need. The metaphor of the bridge provides me with my theoretical perspective that treats food as liminal. The limen, or threshold, is the place of transition from one state to another and food, I argue, is a transitional substance that both forms and transcends boundaries between the ordinary and the extraordinary.
It connects the inner body to the outer world, the private eater to the public marketplace, the spiritual soul to the animal body. Drawing chiefly from the work of Victor Turner, I develop for use in the thesis, a concept of liminality that affords new insights into food choice.
Rejecting a dichotomised view of food as either material or symbol, either culture or nature, either nutritional or social, I approach food as a bridge - as a means of connecting, of moving toward, and of crossing over. I argue for a liminal positioning of food between the empirical and ethical realms, and I show how food choice must be approached this way, as both a material and a symbolic good.
In my thesis I demonstrate the benefits of an inter-disciplinary approach in providing a more nuanced understanding of food. In doing so, I adopt Clifford Geertz's notion of blurring the genres' This approach has been described as a characteristic of the emerging field of Food Studies' which, as Ken Albala says, allows and encourages scholars to interpret food in a more holistic way by reaching beyond the boundaries of academic disciplines and employing multiple methodological tools as appropriate Albala Using a Turnerian-derived concept of liminality as a methodological key and interpretive tool allows me to demonstrate the value of such an inter-disciplinary approach to food and food choice.
Food, as liminal, is betwixt and between; it resists containment within the bounds of any single discipline. It also bridges the empirical and the discursive; the quantitative and the qualitative. My approach therefore incorporates ideas from a range of disciplines and employs a dual methodological approach.
In testing the hypothesis outlined above, the primary task of my thesis is to answer the following questions: Having thus set out my tasks, my argument and my general goals I now turn, for the remainder of this chapter, to an introduction of general themes and the key concepts of liminality and food choice that will be developed in subsequent chapters of the thesis.
I begin by describing the notion of liminality, as originated by Arnold van Gennep and elaborated by Victor Turner, as a useful way to think across boundaries. Next I give an account of what I mean by food choice.
I draw attention to its complex multifaceted nature and highlight the relationship between food and morality. Following that, I consider how food choice has been understood from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. A summary of the major theoretical approaches that have been used in studying nutritional and non-nutritional functions of food is presented, including a small body of work that has explicitly acknowledged the liminality of food.
Liminality and Communitas The concept of liminality emerged from the work of anthropologist Arnold Van Gennep who, in the early twentieth century, developed the idea of rites of passage as a means to interpret the ritual events marking life crises or changes in the social status of an individual throughout the life span Van Gennep Although the concept of rites of passage arose from studies of preliterate or tribal societies, it subsequently came to be used also in complex modern societies.
All societies have rites of passage, and they are of two general types. First are individual rites that mark changes related to age, stage, place, social position and occupation; examples include birth, puberty, marriage, childbirth and death. The life course is a journey which all individuals make, encountering on the way periods and situations that present physical, emotional or social challenges Kenworthy Teather Second are rites related to calendar events, such as changes from month to month new moonseason to season solstice and equinox and year to year New Year and which involve large groups or whole societies.
Van Gennep focused on the first category, conceptualising rites of passage as being mechanisms to allow changes in social status to occur smoothly and without threatening the social order. He claimed that, notwithstanding the immediate purpose and content of any specific ritual, rites of passage universally had a similar three stage structure.
The first stage was one of separation, when an individual left a previous state behind or when a previous set of social conditions were left behind. The second stage was one of transition, during which the individual was neither one thing nor the other but was, in effect, outside of normal social life.
The third phase was one of incorporation in which the individual re-entered the community, having been conferred with a new status and new obligations. Rites are associated with each stage of the process.
For example, rites of separation emphasise the idea of cutting ties with the old status through symbolic acts such as the giving away of a bride.
The hotel-based wedding reception can be seen as a transitional rite which proclaims that the bride is no longer entitled to have meals cooked for her by her mother in her natal home Delamont An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works.
Ransom by David Malouf is a brilliant re-telling of a pivotal moment in Homer’s Iliad when Priam, the aged king of Troy, journeys to the enemy camp to offer a ransom in exchange for his son’s body. What makes the event so poignant is he has to make the offer to his son’s killer, Achilles/5().
David Malouf, Fly Away Peter Better responses demonstrated a real engagement with the text and its characters. These responses effectively explored the choices of an appropriately selected character and demonstrated how that character’s choices impacted on others within the text and on the audience generally.
Dec 05, · By David Malouf. (Pantheon, $) Mr.
Malouf's adroit seventh novel confronts a band of settlers in Australia with Gemmy, a boy born white and . This chapter explores what part film plays in a history of postcolonial literature, and explains the relationship between film and writing in postcolonial contexts.
There are several ways in which one could approach the relationship between postcolonial writing and film. 4/26/ 4/26/ 4/26/ 11/1/ 6/18/ 4/27/ 4/28/ 4/28/