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Distributed for Intellect Ltd

Pasta, Pizza and Propaganda

A Political History of Italian Food TV

Edited by Flavia Laviosa

Distributed for Intellect Ltd

Pasta, Pizza and Propaganda

A Political History of Italian Food TV

Edited by Flavia Laviosa
The history of Italy since the mid-1950s retold through the lens of food television.

In this dynamic interdisciplinary study at the intersection of food studies, media studies, and politics, Francesco Buscemi explores the central role of food in Italian culture through a political history of Italian food on national television. A highly original work of political history, the book tells the story of Italian food television from a political point of view: from the pioneering shows developed under strict Catholic control in the 1950s and 1960s to the left-wing political twists of the 1970s, the conservative riflusso or resurgence of the 1980s, through the disputed Berlusconian era, and into the contemporary rise of the celebrity chef. Through this lively and engaging work, we learn that cooking spaghetti in a TV studio is a political act, and by watching it, we become citizens.

170 pages | 12 halftones | 6 3/4 x 9 1/2

Culture Studies

Film Studies

Food and Gastronomy

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Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Literature Review, Theoretical Framework and Methodology        

            Politics, Television and Food in Italy: Dangerous Liaisons                       

            Politics in Italy after the Second World War                                             

            Television in Italy                                                                             

            Italian Food between reality and stereotypes                              

            Italian food TV                                                                                  

            Theoretical framework                                                                                



Chapter 2: Broadcasting Sacred Food: 1954-1970                                             

            Soldati’s Journey to the Po Valley                                                              

            Soldati’s Conception of Genuineness                                                         

            Nature and Culture                                                                                     

            Culture and the Past                                                                                               

            Where are the women?                                                                               

            Soldati’s Sacred Food                                                                                   

            Linea contro Linea                                                                                       


Chapter 3: 1971-1980: The Ephemeral Wind of Change                                              

            A new political scenario                                                                               

            The New scenario on TV: RAI’s reformation                                             

            A Tavola alle 7                                                                                              

            The Relationship between Veronelli and Ninchi                          

            Ninchi, Veronelli and the field of Italian Politics in the 1970s    

            Dimmi Come Mangi and the Dawn of Neo-TV                                          


Chapter 4: 1981-1999: Going Back Home (and to the Kitchen)                        

            Riflusso and Italy in the 1980s and 1990s                                                           

            Wilma De Angelis and home cooking                                                         

            A Pranzo con Wilma                                                                         

            Food Television Becomes a Genre                                                              


Chapter 5: Eating TV: Food on Berlusconian Television, 2000-2012                

            The Celebrity Housewives and their Shows                                             

            La Prova del Cuoco                                                                          

            Women Between Power and Stereotype                                      

            Serving Sacred Food in Trattoria                                                   

            The Contrasted Discovery of Foreign Food                                               

            Food in the News                                                                                         


Chapter 6: 2012-The Present, The Italian Way to the Celebrity Chef              

            The Invasion of the Global Formats           

            A Case of Italian Adaptation: From Kitchen Nightmares to Cucine da Incubo

            A Cena da Me: Representing Food to Talk about Something Else          

            Food Network Italia                                                                                     

            The New Celebrity Chefs                                                                            

            Alessandro Borghese e Simone Rugiati


            Italian Food out of Italy                                                       

            Dietary Chefs and their Enemies                                                   

            The Tough Chef                                                                               

            Female Professional Cooking                                                                      

            Benedetta Rossi, the Anti-chef                                                        



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