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Accounting for TasteThe Triumph of French Cuisine$
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Priscilla Parkhurst Ferguson

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780226243238

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226243276.001.0001

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Epilogue Babette's Feast: A Fable for Culinary France

Epilogue Babette's Feast: A Fable for Culinary France

(p.187) Epilogue Babette's Feast: A Fable for Culinary France
Accounting for Taste
University of Chicago Press

This epilogue focuses on Babette's Feast (1987), a quasi-cult food film by the Danish director Gabriel Axel that may be considered a modern fable of French culinary culture. An exemplary tale of French cuisine, Babette's Feast (Babettes Gaestebud) stands out for its reach and for its subtle sensuality. The film tells the story of a French cook far from France and is capped by a spectacular repast that conjures a vision of sensual and spiritual well-being created by the transcendent artistry of the main character who, through her art, recreates her country. Babette's Feast shows French cuisine as emblematic of the community created, sustained, and restored by the culinary. It also illuminates the connection between culinary production and the act of consumption.

Keywords:   Babette's Feast, food film, France, French cuisine, culinary culture, consumption, Gabriel Axel, sensuality, food

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