Food and Public Life: Encounters in the Holiday Cover Image
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Food and Public Life: Encounters in the Holiday
Food and Public Life: Encounters in the Holiday

Author(s): Rayna Gavrilova
Subject(s): Anthropology, Social Sciences, Customs / Folklore, Sociology, Cultural Anthropology / Ethnology, Culture and social structure , Globalization, Identity of Collectives
Published by: Институт за етнология и фолклористика с Етнографски музей при БАН
Keywords: public space; participation; celebration; food; commensality; audience; political actors; media

Summary/Abstract: The proposed paper is an attempt to examine and discuss the relationship between social interactions, festivity, and food at the beginning of twenty-first-century Bulgaria. The subject of interest is the specific forms of public space and the participation during two types of events: the feasts of towns and the communal kurbans. The article studies the extent to which the communal celebrations have “enter[ed] the service of economic and political propaganda”(Habermas). Both types of events are organized ‘from the top’ – they are planned, financed and practically performed by people who possess political power. Furthermore, they both include a certain form of distribution of free food; thus, the author comes to the conclusion that the consumption of the food and drinks offered binds the participating individuals in somatic and emotional mutual experiencing the celebration. Commensality is a form of participation, which by definition is voluntary and unarticulated inclusion. The citizen's area quiet audience (publica in Bulgarian) of the activities presented on stage but enthusiastic participants in the shared meals.

  • Issue Year: VII/2021
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 26-42
  • Page Count: 17
  • Language: English