From Eve's apple to Proust's madeleine to today's culinary tourism, food looms large in culture. Sociologists and anthropologists study cooking and eating practices across the globe. Debates about health and nutrition are common in news reports. Yet despite its fundamental relationship to food, taste is mysteriously absent from most of these discussions. The flavors of foods permeate social relations, religious and other occasions. Charged with memory, emotion, desire and aversion, taste is arguably the most evocative of the senses. The Taste Culture Reader explores the sensuous dimensions of eating and drinking, from the physiology of the tongue to the embodiment of social identities and enactment of ceremonial meanings. A cornucopia of historical, cross-cultural and theoretical views is offered, drawing from anthropology, sociology, history, philosophy, science - and more. This book will interest anyone seeking to understand more fully the importance of food and flavor in human experience.