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"He just has to like ham": the centrality of meat in home and consumer studies
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
Vasa Faculty of Education, Åbo Akademi University, Vasa, Finland.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
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2015 (English)In: Appetite, ISSN 0195-6663, E-ISSN 1095-8304, Vol. 95, 101-112 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study aimed to describe Discourses on meat in the school subject Home and Consumer Studies in five different northern Swedish schools. Fifty-nine students and five teachers from five different schools were recorded and in some cases video-taped during lessons. Results indicate that meat was seen as central to nutritional health, sensory experience, culture and social relationships. This positive view was challenged by an alternative Discourse where meat was threatening to health, sensory experience and psychological comfort, but this was not strong enough to affect centrality. Even when participants sought to promote the health advantages of reducing meat consumption, the dominant centrality Discourse was strengthened. This implies that the possible tension between physical and psychosocial/emotional health can make the benefits of a reduction difficult both to convey and accept. A form of critical food literacy may help teachers deconstruct the arbitrary power of the centrality Discourse, but it may also strengthen meat-eater identities because the social norms that guide food choice become salient. A redesign of Discourses might facilitate a reduction in meat consumption, but such a paradigm shift is dependent on the development of society as a whole, and can only be briefly touched upon within the limited timeframes and resources of Home and Consumer Studies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2015. Vol. 95, 101-112 p.
Keyword [en]
Home economics, Health education, Discourse analysis, Critical food literacy
National Category
Sociology Nutrition and Dietetics
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-109298DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2015.06.015ISI: 000362917400013PubMedID: 26145271OAI: diva2:856385
Available from: 2015-09-24 Created: 2015-09-24 Last updated: 2015-11-24Bibliographically approved

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Bohm, IngelaLindblom, CeciliaBengs, CaritaHörnell, Agneta
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Department of Food and NutritionDepartment of Sociology
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