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“Our salad “Olivier”

"Наше все — салат "Оливье"

Philosopher Natalia Zarubina about fashionable and useful post, anecdotes about the food and the crisis

By the end of April the Orthodox lent. Keep it give up meat, dairy products and fish. As shows poll VTSIOM, in this year of religious Canon intends to abide by every fourth Russian. The industry creates for believers of all conditions: in the restaurants, Lenten menu, in shops — special food baskets. In the Moscow city Duma discussed the question concerning the transfer of schools to “meatless diet”. Compared to last year the number of fasting grew by 9 percent. What influences the diet of the Russians? What rich and poor eat? How to transform our tastes and gastronomic preferences from the Soviet era? About it “Lente.Roo” said the doctor of philosophical Sciences, Professor, MGIMO MFA of Russia Natalia Zarubina, who is actively engaged in the sociology of food.

“Ribbon.ru”: why did the Russians suddenly become to fast? Every fourth… we Have so many believers, probably, does not reach.

Natalia Zarubina: Indeed, sociologists lead figure 10-11 percent of the churched believers, that is respectful of all religious traditions. The popularity of the post for several reasons. The least common motivation is purely religious. For believers, this spiritual cleansing, it is not in the rejection of meat, fish or milk, and ascetic self-restraint is the refusal of what is tasty and what you like. But for many post — opportunity to join cultural traditions, to find Orthodox identity. People may not be believers. Someone trains the will. Some believe that food restriction is good for health, for cleansing the body in the spring beriberi, that is, fasting is a kind of collective diet. This view dominates among young people.

"Наше все — салат "Оливье"

Natalia Zarubina

Photo: mgimo.ru

From rich and poor, different post? Is it possible to understand the diet, to which social group a person belongs?

In the West, conducted research on specific products for different social classes. In Russia I have not met representative data on this topic, but there are statistics. For example, in 2012 Russians are the richest compared with the poorest consumed two times more meat and meat products, three times more fruits. Meatless foods are no exception: there are avocados and potatoes.

The power can be regarded as a social marker?

Food was always such a marker. The idea that man is what he eats, originated in ancient times. The researchers note that in the Middle ages in Europe the food is very clearly divided into designed for common people and for high society. It was considered that if the farmer starts is manor food, it can kill. Everyone had to eat in accordance with their status. In Russian culture, maybe it’s not so explicitly, but if we take a domestic monument of the didactic literature of the sixteenth century “Domostroi”, there is clearly stated that you should eat yourself and what to feed the servants. In the modern world it is not as bright as it disappeared unambiguous and clear division of society into classes, but the differences are still present. Elite, for example, the inherent focus on rare products, including out-of-season and imported. For example, eating fresh strawberries in winter, and real, not “plastic” from supermarkets, is a sign of a rich table. Or the opportunity to join the foreign culinary traditions and imported products. Remember, Gogol’s Khlestakov invented the “soup in the pot from Paris”?

"Наше все — салат "Оливье"

Photo: Sergey Pivovarov / TASS

But it often happens that the rich don’t want to crunch salad and eat live oysters and bacon and potatoes.

Aside from the financial possibilities there are also preferences which are formed as a result of applying the individual and collective prolonged experiences. The pleasure a person gets from not only culinary delights, but also the feeling of saturation by itself. For example, for those who are engaged in heavy physical labor or forced long starved, the food must contain high in calories to quickly make energy, and these social classes have formed a taste for hearty, heavy food. Tastes are formed in childhood and have a lot of inertia. If people, who have developed the installation for heavy food suddenly get rich and find yourself in the presence of an abundance of diverse products, it will still be to choose foods which are used. Just more expensive. Culinary culture is formed not one decade.

Desanctions in prosperous years the Russians have managed to create new food preferences?

Studies show that we are still dominated by the tastes prevailing in Soviet times. The history of Russia was hard, with long periods of hunger, lack of food. Therefore, the installation on nourishing food. Take our all — salad “Olivier”. He is far removed from the original recipe, it is long time no caviar, no crayfish, no capers. However it is good as a snack and is consistent with the idea that it means “tasty”. Of course, in good times, when many began to go abroad to try different food when the stores were formerly unknown products, presentation of food has improved markedly. Some groups, especially among upper and middle class, began to change eating habits. However, restaurateurs believe that the crisis in the first place will decrease the segment of Haute cuisine. Just because its social base is also declining.

Due to lack of funds?

Prices and availability of products play a big role, but there are other reasons. Before there was “the Book about tasty and healthy food”, where, in addition to culinary recipes, and have been scientifically-based advice that is useful. Now it is not. Modern science gives and sometimes mutually exclusive information about the products. Man himself must choose, and it is always difficult. And for many delicious and healthy — are not synonymous. Once in such a choice, people engage in habitual food allowance.

The food has always been actively represented in folklore — jokes, for example. Compared with the Soviet time the subject changed?

In the pre-perestroika years often joked about the quality of food. But then it was mainly related to violations of the production technology. For example, sausage of toilet paper to the “product” became more. Or burgers in the dining room: the meat was stolen, and the semi-finished product made of bread. Now watch the technology, what the food turns into a fake, replaced by something artificial. He was born a joke-a parody of the promotional video: “I — magnesium sulfate! I — potassium nitrate! I — calcium glutamate! Together we “orchard”!” Or like this: “Judging by the fact that the shops is just littered with products, “natural identical”, the authorities approve it and consider it perfectly normal. It would be fair and consistent on their part to allow citizens to pay for such products the money, very similar to real”. And yet, unlike the Soviet period, there was gender jokes related to the changing roles in food preparation.

"Наше все — салат "Оливье"

Photo: Alexander Miridonov / Kommersant

Men complain that emancipated women ignore home?

Earlier was actually cooking food mother-in-law or wife. And now “signature dish women good tea and tasty sliced sausage”. “Why did you get involved with the raw food diet? — Because his wife doesn’t like to cook.” A lot of jokes on the subject of different diets. In 70-80-ies of the last century appeared, but not so actively. Jokes react to the mismatch of perceptions of norm and a new state of Affairs. Society makes fun of it, because then it becomes not so scary.

On sanctions and shortage of food is also being sarcastic?

Talk about what happened with the evolution of deficit — “sausage trains to planes with Parmesan”. But now it is emphasized that lack of imported products, and in Soviet times there was a shortage of basic necessities. These are two different things.

People also feel that living now is better than then?

According to a representative of the all-Union research Institute of sociology, 1981-1982 considered already hungry, their food was described as good just over 53 per cent, fair by 44, bad — 3% of respondents.

Now take the data for 2008, when the first wave of the crisis, but prices have jumped as it is today, and imports on the shelves was presented in full. Representative all-Russia survey showed that their food is good counted 36%, satisfactory — 47, poor — 17%. Data for this year yet, but the trend overall is clear.

Why this bias? Range of modern stores still do not compare Soviet…

Inequality of power became more pronounced. Before all, with very few exceptions, I saw on the shelves the same poor range. All were in equal conditions. Now people see that there is a possibility to eat better, but can’t afford it. In addition to financial constraints, the perception of nutrition began to affect the cultural factor. There are the ideal healthy lifestyle, well-proportioned body, and this is contrary to the habits of the majority to the rich, caloric food, which in our tradition is perceived and how delicious. Making a choice in favor of “healthy eating”, the man goes on “tasteless food”, i.e. dissatisfaction with the food largely caused by the contradiction between the cultural ideal and stable tastes of the majority.

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