Negotiating ‘Gastro-anomie’: Exploring the Relationship Between Food, the Body & Identity in Halifax, Nova Scotia
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This thesis explores the relationship between food and identity. Drawing on the concept of ‘gastro-anomie’, or ‘food normlessness’, it asks how individuals’ make sense of food and eating in the context of an increasingly globalised and complex food economy. Through a series of in-depth, semi-structured interviews with a small number of individuals living in Halifax, Nova Scotia, the thesis outlines participants’ everyday attitudes toward food and eating practices. It concludes that individuals actively seek out and ultimately find meaning through their food consumption practices. Consciously aware of the problems associated with the global food economy, the participants in this study used their food choices as a way to reflexively carve out their identities. Their bodies provided a powerful medium through which they engaged in these efforts.