Thursday 25 April 2024 16.00 CET (17.00 EET)

Webex link: https://uoa.webex.com/uoa/j.php?MTID=m9c39349b0ee5dbc0b8de13ce176fa3a7

From pleasure to morality. The political taste of Slow Food

Valeria Siniscalchi

Directrice d’études de l’EHESS
CeRCLEs – Campus EHESS Marseille


Through taste, one of the key concepts of Slow Food, I will reflect on the inclusion / exclusion process and power dynamics inside the SF movement. My case study is based on long-term fieldwork inside SF’s international headquarters in Italy, and in some of its political hubs, where I explored the intimate workings of the movement. I will approach the particular space created by taste and practices of tasting in order to analyze the political use of taste by Slow Food and the
changes that have shaped this use over the years. In today’s Slow Food world, taste seems to be increasingly subjected to a moral characterization: “good” food is also “morally” good because it is produced with respect for the environment and animals. Thus taste is revealed as a double-edged tool that can be used to include or exclude at the same time, making visible the tension between inclusion and exclusion always present in SF practices and values.

Valeria Siniscalchi is Full professor (Directrice d’études) at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS), Centre de recherche sur les circulations, les liens et les échanges (CeRCLEs, Marseille, France). Her work focuses on economic anthropology, food activism, and the relationship between food, social movements and politics. She is co-editor of Food Activism: Agency, Democracy and Economy (2014 with C. Counihan) and Food Values in Europe (2019, with Krista Harper). Her ethnography on Slow Food has been published by Bloomsbury, Slow Food. The Economy and Politics of a Global Movement (2023).