The Invention of Taste : A Cultural Account of Desire, Delight and Disgust in Fashion, Food and Art book cover
1st Edition

The Invention of Taste
A Cultural Account of Desire, Delight and Disgust in Fashion, Food and Art

ISBN 9781350048010
Published September 21, 2017 by Routledge
224 Pages

FREE Standard Shipping
USD $48.95

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

The Invention of Taste provides a detailed overview of the development of taste, from ancient times to the present. At the heart of the book is an intriguing question: why did the sensory attribute of human taste become a social metaphor and aesthetic value for judging cultural qualities of art, fashion, cuisine and other social constructions? Unique amongst the senses, taste is at once a biologically derived sense, private, personal and individual, yet also a sensibility which can be acquired, shared, and communicated. Exploring the many factors that defined the evolution of taste – from medieval morals and medicine to social and cultural philosophy, the rise of aesthetics, birth of fashion, branding trends, and luxury worship in the age of mass consumption – Luca Vercelloni’s ambitious text provides readers with an outstanding introduction to the subject, making it the cultural history of taste.Now available for the first time in English, Taste features a new final chapter and a preface by series editor David Howes. Rich in detail and examples, this interdisciplinary work is an important read for students and researchers in sensory studies, philosophy, sociology and cultural studies, as well as gastronomy, fashion, design, and branding.

Table of Contents

Preface by series editor David HowesIntroduction1. The Success of a Metaphor2. Morals and Pleasure3. The Birth of Aesthetics and the Diversification of Tastes4. The Arts of Happiness: a Journey through Impure Tastes5. The Economy of Taste in Consumer SocietyBibliographyIndex

View More



Luca Vercelloni is the CEO and Founder of Brandvoyant, Italy


Anthropologists will certainly agree with Vercelloni's assertion…that a history and indeed an anthropology of taste is not only possible but important, and Vercelloni…has certainly done us a service in pinpointing aesthetics and taste as cultural constructions with a definite social history. - Anthropology Review Database - Jack David Eller