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«Nicolas Larchet École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales Abstract The problem of changing food habits has once again become a major public ...»

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32 If eating fresh, locally-grown or organic foods has become a status symbol among the American upper middle and upper classes (Johnston and Baumann 2010), this strategy of distinction is still foreign to the lower classes.

33 Pierre Bourdieu‘s work offers a theorization of these class-based cultural conflicts, defining ―uses of body‖ as one of the last refuges of autonomy of working class culture (Bourdieu 1977: 53).

34 Another line of inquiry would have been to explore ―cultural‖ factors in food choices as they relate to AfricanAmerican history. The culinary tradition known today as ―soul food‖ (or, depending on the perspective, ―southern cuisine‖) was born of necessity, to make the best of rations of pork and cornmeal and leftovers from the master‘s table supplied to the slaves on the plantations (Douglas Opie 2008).

35 The son of a Methodist minister, Wilbur Olin Atwater (1844–1907) obtained a PhD in chemistry at Yale and studied nutrition in Germany under Carl von Voit before directing the country‘s first agricultural experiment station at Wesleyan University.

36 While this study design did not collect data on cooking, the few surveys available seem to indicate that the popular classes possess as much cooking skills, cook more and eat fewer ready-to-eat meals than the middle and upper classes (Darmon and Drewnowski 2008: 1,112).

37 Interview with an educator at a food bank, January 22, 2010.

38 Fictitious name.

39 Fictitious name.

40 I ended my observations when Mohamed sold his store to a second-generation Vietnamese immigrant, in order to join his wife who was living out of state. Two years later when I came back to the city, the store was closed, its wall paintings covered up.

41 Being mistaken for police is a very common experience among urban ethnographers (Whyte 1943; Bourgois 1995).

42 Once he read it, when asked about the book‘s relevance to his own experience, Mohamed replied: ―It was like watching a movie for a second time.‖ 43 ―Whichever way you turn this curse of class-differences confronts you like a wall of stone. Or rather it is not so much like a stone wall as the plate-glass pane of an aquarium; it is so easy to pretend that it isn‘t there, and so impossible to get through it.‖ (Orwell 1958 [1937]: 156).

44 ―Whether or not there is more to these citations than ‗Some of my best friends are …‘ or ‗Yes, but you‘re different,‘ the wall between us remained, or better, the chain-link fence, since despite the barriers we were able to look at each other, walk alongside each other, talk and occasionally touch fingers.‖ (Liebow 1967: 250–1).

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