Domestic sensualism: Laurie Colwin's food writing


FOOD CULTURE & SOCIETY, vol.21, no.2, pp.128-143, 2018 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 21 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/15528014.2018.1427925
  • Journal Name: FOOD CULTURE & SOCIETY
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.128-143
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


When New York writer Laurie Colwin is remembered, it is usually for her numerous novels and short stories. However, between the mid-1980s and her death in 1992 at the age of forty-eight, she also wrote for Gourmet magazine, and published two volumes of food writing: Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen (1988) and More Home Cooking: A Writer Returns to the Kitchen (posthumously in 1993). In "Guilty Pleasures: The Fiction of Laurie Colwin," Amy Richlin states that Colwin's "domestic sensualism" serves as a framework for her novels and short stories. Colwin wrote about comfort food in the same way she wrote comfort prose, with domestic sensualism also functioning as the framework of Home Cooking and More Home Cooking. However, in the context of her food writing, domestic sensualism was anything but a bourgeois female "guilty pleasure." Rather, it was a visible, and very public, multilayered vehicle for Colwin's personal and political opinions on culinary matters, which she saw as being linked to broader social issues.