Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Virtues of the Table: How to Eat and Think” as Want to Read:
The Virtues of the Table: How to Eat and Think
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Virtues of the Table: How to Eat and Think

by
3.83  ·  Rating details ·  119 ratings  ·  16 reviews
How we eat, farm and shop for food is not only a matter of taste. Our choices regarding what we eat involve every essential aspect of our human nature: the animal, the sensuous, the social, the cultural, the creative, the emotional and the intellectual. Thinking seriously about food requires us to consider our relationship to nature, to our fellow animals, to each other an ...more
Paperback, 301 pages
Published January 2nd 2014 by Granta (first published 2014)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Virtues of the Table, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Virtues of the Table

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.83  · 
Rating details
 ·  119 ratings  ·  16 reviews


Filter
 | 
Sort order
Paul Harris
My experience with 'books about food' is nothing kore than a reading of Foer's 'Eating Animals' 3 and a half years ago, an experience that then prompted of a sort of, but not really change in my eating habits. It's a book I now want to revisit, but it's not the one I'm reviewing here.

This book has a pretty poor start, at least, that was my experience. I almost gave up on it after thirty pages as I didn't want to read a recipe book with some cod-philosophy unceremoniously stuffed between the cook
...more
yin
Feb 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
my kindle read notes:

我是无法认同仲尼先生的——“食不言”。 我是半个意大利人,在我们的文化里,吃往往体现了宴饮之欢的美德。围着一张桌子吃饭,是谈话的最佳时刻。吃是一种深刻的人文主义体验,它把所有人都带到了同一层面上:不管是国王还是农夫,所有人都必须吃东西。从中庸之道出发,显然可以推导出,在餐桌边保持沉默,跟边吃边扯着嗓子大呼小叫,同样不够得体。吃带来了对话的可能性,而《吃的美德》,就是邀你加入对话的请柬。

所以,总体而言,自留地是一个绝妙的例子,它示范了人类如何依靠社会、历史链条织就的复杂网络,让相隔很远的彼此发生联系。这提醒我们:人类之所以能够饮食丰足,完全是因为相互依存;人类这一物种成功繁衍和生产力创造的根源,正来自社会交往和交换能力。我们应该欣慰,这些链条促进了人类发展,而不是自欺欺人地想着所有的事情都该自己做。

全球化存在的真正问题,跟贸易双方隔得远近毫无关系。我们时代的痼疾,是贸易的去人性化,以及将所有产品和生产者全都简化成“商品”的倾向。

时令性的第一条价值观是环境。
第二条价值观是审美。有些食物在自然上市的季节里口感更好。
不少水果和蔬菜经过长途运输后会丧失新
...more
Caleb Liu
Dec 30, 2017 rated it liked it
I have to admit that it was a brilliant idea to use food as a means to explore many philosophical issues. Can cooking be considered an art lends itself to broader questions of aesthetics and what exactly is art being just one example. Eating and pleasure nicely dovetails into utilitarianism and whether food is indeed a “lower” pleasure by Mill’s definition

Baggini writes with clarity and manages the difficult task of simplifying complex ideas without distorting them admirably for the most part.
...more
Vianca
Jul 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
It’s a 3.5 for me

There are some pretty good lessons in here and good points to consider like his chapters on vegetarianism/veganism but hmm I don’t know, I feel like most of the points are not too difficult to forget? Maybe because food is not my favorite reading subject or I’m just not too concerned about it?

Anyway, at the end of every part he shares simple recipes that I think are quite friendly; no strict measurements and ingredients which is attractive (I imagine especially to people not to
...more
Josie
Oct 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Quite literally and metaphorically, food of thought.
Kiwiflora
Oct 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Do we 'Eat to Live, or Live to Eat'? - a quote attributed variously, it seems, to Benjamin Franklin, Cicero, Socrates or Moliere. Considering the centuries that have elapsed since Socrates was philosophising around 300-400BC, it is intriguing that we still spend a lot of thought and energy on analysing the human experience with food. You see, for us humans, eating is not simply about feeding - life giving, sustenance, nutrition, energy and survival. Sure this is part of the package, but what set ...more
Wouter
Feb 14, 2015 rated it it was ok
There are some very encouraging chapters where I read everything with great interest, but after a while it started to really get on my nerves. Disclaimer: i'm not a philosophy lover but I don't completely reject every heavyweight principle ever said by well known academics. That said, Julian's opinion on some pieces like eating meat with compassion did not go well with mine. The later the chapters, the more meta they got and the less about food. I would not recommend buying this even if you're i ...more
Schopflin
Jul 14, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: finished-in-2016
I disliked this book at first and found its didactic tone ironic since its earliest injunction is to question labels and think for yourself about food. I yearned for the intelligent, questioning tone Hattie Ellis manages in 'What to Eat?' . However, the book grew on me and by the time he describes his short-tempered two-fingered salute spurred by dieting, I was won over. It is a very intelligent and thought-provoking book and, like Ellis's, has encouraged me to question more and to continue to t ...more
Alexandra
Mar 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I've pretty much always worked in the food industry in different roles and food has always been a hobby and obsession for me as well as my career. It is rare for me to find a book about food which challenges my ideas and experiences and whilst I don't always find myself agreeing completely with Baggini, his different essays on varying gastronomic topics set me thinking and questioning long held beliefs. A beguiling book for anyone with a life in food, or a household philosopher.
Kevin
Dec 11, 2014 rated it liked it
What is the meaning behind our everyday meal?
If you are an avid foodie & a thinker, this book is for you.
There is no exact answer on how to eat and this is certainly not the objective of the book.
Instead, this is the kind of book that puts a stone in your shoes.
Some aspects discussed are selection of food (terms like organic, GMO, local, etc.), preparation of food, the eating process itself, fasting, and so on.
Each chapter is complemented with the author's recipe.
Hans Mülller
Sep 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Leuk/aardig boek over eten en moraal. beschouwend boek met interessante ideeen en vragen. Waarom biologisch niet altijd goed is, waarom dieeten niet werkt enz. Evenwichtig maar niet schokkend, bevat ook niet heel veel opzienbarende inzichten. Recepten die tussen de betogen door staan zijn niet altijd even boeiend, maar voor het boek ook niet echt nodig.
Eric Kalnins
Feb 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
After an indifferent start as I found a little preachy this book really grew achieving four stars for me. I suspect this is influenced by my own bias so that as I went further it became more aligned to what interests me.
Thoughtful engaging read ... recommended
Kate
May 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
Really interesting and clearly argued. Challenged me to question many of my long held attitudes and beliefs around food in all kinds of ways.
Jimmy C
Oct 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
It made me think
Ling Xuan
May 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A fresh and thoughtful take on the nuances revolving around "food" and the perennial act of "eating", which, at times, elaborated beyond to other areas of living and human condition. A great read!
Alan
rated it really liked it
Apr 21, 2017
Adrideo
rated it really liked it
Jul 11, 2016
Alex
rated it really liked it
Jun 10, 2015
Jacco
rated it really liked it
Jan 30, 2017
Falcon Li
rated it liked it
Nov 12, 2017
Darren Rix
rated it really liked it
Jan 17, 2016
Di
rated it liked it
Sep 27, 2017
Aethanyc
rated it it was amazing
Apr 22, 2017
Simba
rated it really liked it
Jun 14, 2018
Allisoneve
rated it it was amazing
Oct 19, 2016
Sharon Hall
rated it liked it
Jan 24, 2016
Helga
rated it liked it
Jan 14, 2015
Chiyu Wang
rated it liked it
Jul 30, 2016
Luke Lin
rated it really liked it
Feb 04, 2016
Moodejo
rated it liked it
Apr 02, 2017
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Challenge of Things: Thinking Through Troubled Times
  • 1080 Recipes
  • You Aren't What You Eat: Fed Up With Gastroculture
  • The Needs Of Strangers
  • A Brief History of Britain 1066-1485
  • Honey, Olives, Octopus: Adventures at the Greek Table
  • Feasts
  • Fasting and Feasting: The Life of Visionary Food Writer Patience Gray
  • The Deepest Human Life: An Introduction to Philosophy for Everyone
  • Essential Zen
  • South Park and Philosophy: Bigger, Longer, and More Penetrating
  • Best Food Writing 2015
  • Anti Americanism
  • Date Night Cookbook
  • Cunk on Everything: The Encyclopedia Philomena
  • Meet Me at the Bamboo Table: Everyday Meals Everywhere
  • The Catholic Imagination
  • Paleo Takeout: Restaurant Favorites Without the Junk
236 followers
Julian Baggini is a British philosopher and the author of several books about philosophy written for a general audience. He is the author of The Pig that Wants to be Eaten and 99 other thought experiments (2005) and is co-founder and editor of The Philosophers' Magazine. He was awarded his Ph.D. in 1996 from University College London for a thesis on the philosophy of personal identity. In addition ...more