Laura Lindenfeld, dean of the School of Communication and Journalism and executive director of the Alda Center for Communicating Science, recently published a chapter about the growing emphasis on food and how food is represented in film.
The chapter, “Food and the Senses in Film,” was published in the book Food Media Senses, Interdisciplinary Approaches. Edited by Christina Bartz, Jens Ruchatz and Eva Wattolik, it was published by Transcript.
“Food has always been critical to how people express themselves and their culture, and increasingly we see filmmakers focus more and more attention on how food is portrayed and how it impacts the senses, not only of the characters but of us as viewers,” said Lindenfeld.
The chapter specifically explores food in animated films, ranging from popular Pixar films like Ratatouille and Kung Fu Panda as well as international films from China and other Asian countries. Lindenfeld and her co-author, Fabio Parasecoli, found that in these animated films, food stands in for relationships between characters and is often portrayed in more detailed, realistic ways than other aspects of the films.
The chapter is part of an ongoing collaboration between Lindenfeld and Parasecoli. The pair have together written several other papers as well as a book, “Feasting our Eyes: Food, Films and Cultural Identity.” Recently, Lindenfeld also appeared on a panel about “The Taste of Things,” an Oscar-nominated French film about the relationship between a personal chef and her employer of 20 years. The conversation was hosted in Washington, DC, by Villa Albertine.