‘The World on a Plate’: Transformed Cosmopolitan
Utopia in Food Blog Culture

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The main aim of the chapter is not to discuss the relationship between media and cosmopolitanism, which is already outlined in much more detail in the introduction, nor to produce a historical excursion of the role of food in media and cultural theory, which can already be found elsewhere (see, for example, Mennell, Murcott and van Otterloo 1992). Instead, the chapter aims to discuss aspects of culinary cosmopolitanism as revealed by the rich and multifaceted world of food blogs.1 Food blogs are the ideal space where we can expect to trace examples of embedded cosmopolitanism or should conduct empirical research revealing cosmopolitan practices and identities. However, there are two qualified contributions that this chapter attempts in particular. Firstly, there is currently a lack of academic literature that addresses food blogs from a cosmopolitan perspective. Secondly, much of the existing literature about food and media chooses to focus on elite cosmopolitanism, or, as Craig Calhoun has so poignantly termed it, ‘frequent flyer’ cosmopolitanism (2002). Such texts, further discussed in this chapter, are correct to describe cosmopolitanism as wishful thinking, utopian and aspirational, insofar as cosmopolitanism idealizes our being with others in the world. However, I argue in this chapter that the cosmopolitan utopia has been transformed from the grassroots and has become naturalized and embedded in everyday practices, both at a private and public level. The chapter sketches a working definition of cosmopolitanism in relation to food culture, discusses the tensions that define existing theory related to food (blog) culture and conducts an empirical research of four food blogs located in Estonia, Spain, the United States and Israel.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMedia and Cosmopolitanism
EditorsAybige Yilmaz, Ruxandra Trandafoiu, Aris Mousoutzanis
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherPeter Lang
Number of pages282
ISBN (Print)9783035306637
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Publication series

NameNew Visions of the Cosmopolitan


Cite this

Trandafoiu, R. (2014). ‘The World on a Plate’: Transformed Cosmopolitan
Utopia in Food Blog Culture. In A. Yilmaz, R. Trandafoiu, & A. Mousoutzanis (Eds.), Media and Cosmopolitanism (Vol. 3, pp. 29-50). (New Visions of the Cosmopolitan). Peter Lang. https://doi.org/10.3726/978-3-0353-0663-7