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Alternative title: Rewriting the Menu : The Cultural Dynamics of Contemporary Food Choices
Issue Details: First known date: 2010... no. 9 October 2010 of TEXT Special Issue Website Series est. 2000 TEXT : Special Issue Website Series
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* Contents derived from the 2010 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Rewriting a National Cultural Food Icon : A Gastrobiography of Vegemite, Donna Lee Brien , single work criticism
'In the current publishing environment, where there is an unprecedented level of reader interest in food-related texts, a wide range of subject matter is providing a rich source of opportunities for writers. In this context, the individual food product (either biological or processed) is one such area of professional and creative opportunity. Suggesting that the 'gastrobiography' is a form of writing that can serve the particular interests of writers as well as their readers and publishers, this article defines the term and its applications in food writing. It then presents a gastrobiography of Vegemite, utilising the form to consider the yeast spread's history, ongoing role in Australian life, and how this has been conceptualised and written about. Also investigated is Vegemite's place in the personal politics of eating and politics more broadly. In the process, the gastrobiographical form is revealed as one that can present Vegemite as a site of contradiction and paradox that can reveal much about the world in which it is produced and sold.' (Author's abstract)
The Red Frog Prince : A Fairytale About the Shifting Social Status of Sugar, Toni Risson , single work criticism
'Once upon a time, sugar was a magical substance in an ordinary world. When it became cheap and readily available in the mid-nineteenth century, sugar and sugar confectionery became part of the ordinary diet, and have since fallen to the status of junk food, and, more recently, poison. But children relate to lollies at the level of imagination, so lollies are a vital part of the wonder of childhood and retain for children the magical cultural status once attributed to them. Allen’s red jelly frogs are banned from school tuckshops, but they play a noble role in opening doors for youth chaplains during the notorious Schoolies Week. Furthermore, the humble lolly descends from the elaborate sugarwork that once featured in royal banquets; it was noble all along. Lollies are no longer on the menu, and they do not even fit into food categories, but judgements based on food value alone fail to take into account the magical role they play in children’s lives and ignore the ways in which health authorities, artists, and advertisers use confectionery. Lollies have more in common with fairytales than food. The Frog Prince—a fairytale about a royal son who is turned into an ugly frog by a wicked enchantress and then rescued through his relationship with a child—is a metaphor for red frog lollies. This paper examines red frogs as sites of transformation, thereby repositioning sugar confectionery as magic and challenging dominant narratives that reduce the complexity of lollies and their cultural significance.' (Author's abstract)
I Can Still Taste You, Susan Bradley Smith , single work short story

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Last amended 6 Feb 2012 14:54:39
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