Gastronomic View Of The World In English Neology: Linguocultural Aspect

Abstract

The article is devoted to the gastronomic picture of the world and English neologisms which reflect both traditional and new food practices of the English-speaking society. As a result of the study of neologisms in the English gastronomic picture of the world four of the most important lexical groups have been distinguished. The groups that designate food and people both as consumers and producers of products have the greatest nominative density. Attitudes toward food as a source of nutrition and a person as a consumer of nutrition are traditional points of view for any society. However, new values for a modern society are noted in these groups. Food is seen as a source of aesthetic pleasure and a means of socialization.The groups of neologisms denoting the places of consumption and purchase of food as well as new technologies related to food production are represented by fewer units but they reflect political, social, cultural, scientific and technological changes that take place in modern English-speaking society. Especially significant is the trend according to which food consumption appears to be a secondary process compared to other occupations that are more important for a modern person.The authors emphasize the importance of considering language changes in close connection with changes in society, with the peculiarities of mentality and psychological attitudes of a modern person.

Keywords: Gastronomic discoursegastronomic view of the worldneologism,neologynominative density,set of values

Introduction

The development of the language proceeds under the sign of its constant improvement and enrichment of functional capabilities, which is particularly intensively and visually realized at the lexical level in the constant two-way archaization process – the vocabulary of the language renewal. A striking evidence of the dynamics of language is the process of the emergence of new words driven by changes in objective reality since society always seeks to find means for nominating new realities.

With the help of lexical nominations, a person realizes the representation of objects of the real world. In words as nominative units of a language certain knowledge of reality is stored sufficient to identify the real or ideal entities denoted by words. On the one hand, there is a person objectifying the objective world connected with all the stages of their social experience and labor activity, with the selection and generalization of the necessary and essential in the object of knowledge. And on the other hand there is a designation of a new object through the non-essential, secondary signs of another object reflected in its name (Katermina, 2017).

The formation of new words, the emergence of new meanings is due to the constant creative work of human consciousness, the endless cognitive process determined by the practical and intellectual activity of a person. The appearance of neologisms marks an important stage in the comprehension of objective reality presenting the pinnacle of the process of renewing the cognitive-discursive potential of the language, an important stage of discursive mastering of nominated objects and phenomena of reality, their signs which are important for human life. The emergence of new nominations is a kind of response to the social demand, the result of cognitive-discursive mastery and interpretation of reality.

Problem Statement

Food has always been an important part of human history but it has never been an object of special study in linguistics. Social anthropologists and culture expects usually treated food as an important element of “the ethnic” triad together with the other elements – clothing and dwelling (Kabickij, 2011).

In contemporary society food has acquired a new understanding and made human sciences focus special attention on it. Antyuhina (2015) notes “food has transformed from a means of need satisfaction into a cultural phenomenon with many senses” (p. 5). Anderson (2005) reveals the cultural essence of food writing that food “carries massages about status, gender, role, ethnicity, religion, identity, and other socially constructed regimes. It is also, very often, used <…> to mark or indicate particular occasions, particular personal qualities, particular hangups and concerns” (p. 6).

The study of food, as an important element of cultural practice, in the social-cultural context, provides a way for new research in anthropology as well as in linguistics. It is especially interesting to use a linguocultural approach to food. The object of linguoculture is an interrelation and an interaction of language and culture in their process of functioning while its subject is material and spiritual culture in its past and present existence and functioning, i.e. everything that finds its reflection in the linguistic view of the world.

The linguistic view of the world content has never been neutral as it always represents cultural set of values formed in the proses of world cognition. The primary and the main area of the cultural values emergence and existence is everyday life, in the core of which a vitally important phenomenon is gastronomy considered as a complex of processes of obtaining, cooking and consuming food (Cherednikova, 2011).

One cannot but agree with Rogova (2016) who thinks that “conceptual sphere ‘food’ is important in ever culture” (p. 97) as food is semiotic in its origin and is a cultural code (Chandler, 2018). Dvorak (1996) pointed out the connection among food sign, code and ethnic culture: “Cultural ethnicity in terms of this key marker – food displays itself through the socio-political nature of food semiotics (food codes)” (p. 15). Stano (2014) shares his points of view: “Food is not only a substance for survival and nourishment, but it is also pаrt of a sign system as it is strictly involved in processes of signification and interpretation. Specifically, it can be conceived as a language (сode) expressing social structures and cultural systems” (p. 21). Civitello (2008) also notes a close interaction of semiotics, coded communication and gastronomy in his work.

The importance of conceptual sphere “food” in contemporary society made the researchers find it necessary to distinguish “gastronomic view of the world which finds its representation in different types of gastronomic discourse. Olyanich (2015) points out that “gastronomic discourse is directly associated with conceptual sphere “food” and their unity represents a special sign system, where ‘national capital’, personal and national self-identifications and a subjective attitude (taste), gender and social (class) characteristics are concentrated” (p. 157).

The gastronomic discourse in itself is “a complex, multidimensional and heterogeneous formation” (Kosickaya & Zajceva, 2016, p. 26) which includes different kinds of discourse, closely connected with all fields of contemporary society dealing with food.

The concept “food” develops together with the growth of human society. Even within the same linguoculture the concept “food” is constantly changing acquiring new senses and getting more complex. Olyanich and Nikishkova (2014) a think that taking into account cultural and ethnospecific information revealing associative links of utterances and their semiotic content with ethnolinguistic and cultural institutions of different ethnic groups allows us to give an adequate description of the gastronomic picture of the world of native speakers and corresponding ethnoculture, successfully decode information obtained as a result of gastronomic discourse development.

Neologisms are considered to be of special importance in the process of getting cultural information from the discourse as they reflect the gastronomic view of the world at its present period of society development. The analyses of neologisms in the gastronomic view of world reveals the nominative density volume of the well-known notions as well as detects new zones, which have recently undergone the nomination.

Research Questions

3.1 What fields in the gastronomic picture of the world possess the highest nominative density?

3.2 How do new words from the gastronomic view the world reflect innovations in social, economic, political and cultural spheres?

3.3 How are people represented in the gastronomic view of the world?

3.4 What parts of the gastronomic view of the world are axiologically marked?

Purpose of the Study

In this article we will analyse English neologisms, nominating words related to gastronomic view of the world and taken from electronic dictionaries of new words: Word spy, Macmillan Dictionary, Urban Dictionary, Cambridge Dictionaries Online Blog, Oxford Dictionary, Ludwig.

The analysis of English new words contributes to the understanding of new trends, views and values in modern English-speaking society. As food in modern society is no longer just a process of nutrition necessary for our bodies it is interesting to reveal through gastronomic neologisms how the concept “food’ is intertwined with other fields of human activity, and what evaluation new patterns of nutrition get in contemporary society.

Neologisms can found new semantic fields when they name new notions, which have recently appeared in society. However, they usually enlarge well-known semantic fields with new notions thus adding more details to the description of a certain part of the conceptual picture of the world.

Thus, the analysis of the gastronomic neologicalunits helps to discover new notions and ideas exist in contemporary society as well as explore the transformation of well-known ones.

Research Methods

In this article we will analyse English neologisms, nominating words related to gastronomic view of the world and taken from electronic dictionaries of new words: Word spy, Macmillan Dictionary, Urban Dictionary, Cambridge Dictionaries Online Blog, Oxford Dictionary, Ludwig.

The analysis of English new words contributes to the understanding of new trends, views and values in modern English-speaking society. As food in modern society is no longer just a process of nutrition necessary for our bodies it is interesting to reveal through gastronomic neologisms how the concept “food’ is intertwined with other fields of human activity, and what evaluation new patterns of nutrition get in contemporary society.

Neologisms can find new semantic fields when they name new notions, which have recently appeared in society. However, they usually enlarge well-known semantic fields with new notions thus adding more details to the description of a certain part of the conceptual picture of the world.

Thus, the analysis of the gastronomic neologicalunits helps to discover new notions and ideas exist in contemporary society as well as explore the transformation of well-known ones.

Findings

As a result of English neologism analysis we distinguished four lexical groups in the gastronomic view of the world. These groups name: 1) types of food; 2) people; 3) places of getting and taking food; 4) new technologies and devices. Each of the groups falls into subgroups, which detail the main theme of the group.

The linguistic view of the world is believed to reflect people’s needs, consequently, “the image of a person is a core of every ethnic culture and its set of values” (Katermina, 2015, p. 31). However, our analysis of gastronomic neologisms shows that the lexico-semantic group naming people is less in number than the group naming types of food. Obviously, it is explained by the fact that the gastronomic view of the world, for most, is a reflection of gastronomical tastes, gluttony priorities and esthetic representations of food (Dobrenko, 2009). People in this field evaluate rather than being evaluated and as consumers and producers of foodstuffs they take a secondary place in the gastronomic view of the world.

The lexical group “Types of food”

As it was mentioned above the lexical group, “types of food” includes neologisms, which name both particular dishes and drinks and food with specific ingredients. The group itself falls into four subgroups: 1) meat, fish, vegetable, bread and flour dishes; 2) dishes from different national cuisines; 3) drinks; 4) food with specific components.

The most numerous subgroup is the one with units naming meat, fish, vegetable, bread and flour dishes i.e. dishes made from traditional for people foodstuff as, for example, hamdog (a hamburger and a hotdog together in a specially designed bun) (MD) ; poke (a dish of marinated raw fish or seafood, often served over rice.) (OD)

The predominance of neologisms denoting bread and flower dishes in this subgroup is obvious, and reflects both the traditional approach to bread and flour dishes and new tendencies. One the one hand “English cooking has always been associated with bread and flower dishes” (Popova, Kupcova, & Makarova, 2016, p. 63), on the other hand, one can see two different tendencies which exist in the mind of a modern person. The first one is a desire for healthy food and a healthy lifestyle which is reflected in the great number of similar gastronomic neologisms, and, the second one is the love of sweet and delicious food: bread pakora (a fried snack of bread slices; bannock – a round flat loaf or biscuit made from oats) (MD); cruffin (a small cake that is a combination of a croissant and a muffin) (MD); piecaken (awsome tasting cake with pie in it) (UD); сheela (a savory pancake made from gram flour, vegetables and spices) (MD); сroloaf (a croissant loaf – a loaf made from croissant pastry ) (MD).

The neologisms meat fruit and salad cake are of great interest. Their names present an oxymoron aimed at drawing people’s attention as meat fruit is a meat dish that is constructed to resemble a piece of fruit, and salad cake is a food that is designed to look like a sweet cake but is actually made of savoury ingredients such as soy and vegetables.

Neologisms naming dishes from cuisines of other countries and parts of the world form another subgroup. As the analysis shows most of the neologism in this subgroup name dishes borrowed from South-Eastern Countries or South Africa, for example from China – soup dumpling (a Chinese dish consisting of a small ball of dough filled with soup) (CDOB), Korea – kimchi (a traditional fermented Korean dish made of vegetables with varied seasonings) (UD), Japan – raindrop cake (a type of dessert, popular in Japan, that looks like a large raindrop. It is made of mineral water and gelatin or agar (both jelly-like substances) and is served with roasted soybean flour and sugar cane syrup) (MD) and matcha or matcha tea (a type of specially grown green tea, used in powder form) (MD), South Africa – bunny chow (a South African dish of curry served in a hollowed out loaf) (MD).

The Middle East gives Englishmen sweets – that is how the word knafeh (CD) is translated. This dish consists of layers of pastry and soft cheese in a thick liquid made from sugar.

As the neologisms show food in English-speaking countries has become more international.

English gastronomic neologisms naming alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks constitute the third subgroup of the lexical field “types of food”. Among the alcoholic drinks are dirty martini (a strong alcoholic drink made with gin and vermouth) with added olive brine or juice and garnished with an olive) (MD), an alcoholic cocktail (a cocktail made of whiskey or another spirit, sugar or syrup, bitters, ice, and decorated with a slice of orange and a cherry) (CDOB), frosé (a type of alcoholic drink made of frozen rosé wine mixed with sugar, lemon juice and sometimes other alcoholic drinks) (MD).

Non-alcoholic drinks are freakshake (milkshake topped with cream, topped with cake, topped with sauce, with a handful of sweets thrown in for good measure) (MD), aquafaba (the water from cooked beans, used as an egg white substitute in vegan cuisine) (CDOB), аmbient tea (tea that is brewed for up to an hour at a temperature of between 10Cand 15C) (MD), golden milk (a type of drink made with coconut milk, turmeric and sometimes other ingredients) (CDOB).

On the whole neological units naming alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks represent variations of well-known beverages.

Neological units naming food with specific components comprise the second in size and the fourth subgroup of the lexical group “types of food”. Neologisms of this group possess a certain degree of evaluation and reflect points of view and stereotypes common in English-speaking society.

For instance, food is divided into healthy food: nanofood (food containing nanoparticles of silver to prevent spoilage and prolong shelf life) (CDOB), sirtfood (a food that is high in sirtuins (a class of protein) and thought to be beneficial to weight loss) (CDOB), and unhealthy food: dirty food (extremely calorific food with no nutritional value; junk food) (CDOB), hyperpalatable food (food with heightened levels of sugar and salt, intended to be extremely appealing) (CDOB).

The negative evaluation of food is quite a new tendency in contemporary society. Actually food has always had a positive connotation as it is a source of nutrition. However, Pashkovskaya (2018) in her resent research has found that the concept “food” “has acquired a negative association dew to illnesses caused by food” (p. 83).

Food for men, dude food (food that is assumed to appeal to men, especially things like burgers, hotdogs and chips) (MD), is also considered to be unhealthy. This neologism originates from the culinary book by Dan Churchill released in 2015 (Dan Churchill Dude Food). His goal was to encourage men to cook. There is no emphasis on hamburgers and hot dogs In this book, but nevertheless, it was this bestseller that played a greater role for the active use of this neologism which was reflected in the minds of native speakers in 2016.

This subgroup also includes neologisms naming different diets. In contemporary society food, thanks to advertisement and mass media, has a certain influence on human identity formation. It forms peoples’ physical, national, communicative and ethic characteristics. In this connection, a diet is an important part of the gastronomic view of the world.

The gastronomic neologisms name different kinds of diets. The neological units denoting the Paleolithic diet and its varieties are notable for the highest degree of semantic density among the units naming other types of diet. This diet is named as Paleo diet; Paleolithic diet; Paleo (a diet that is based on what people are believed to have eaten during the Stone Age, before the development of agriculture) (MD); Ancestral health (diet based on the presumed diet of our Palaeolithic ancestors) (CDOB).

The key components of these units are words paleolithic (of or relating to the second period of the Stone Age) and ancestral (of or belonging to or inherited from an ancestor) which reveal the belief that people in the Stone Age, our ancestors, ate such food.

Another type of diet is Pegan diet (CDOB), a vegan variation of the Paleo diet, which is based on foods available to our ancient ancestors, such as nuts, berries, eggs and meat.

The new trend of healthy eating is reflected in the neologism clean eating (MD) denoting the dietary practice of avoiding processed, refined foods and eating fresh wholefoods. Having its supporters and opponents, this diet exists in the modern world and causes a lot of controversy on the Internet.

Another source of healthy nutrition is ketogenic diet (a diet that aims at a high production of ketones (=substances that are produced when the body breaks down fat) in the body. It consists of a 4:1 ratio of fats to proteins and carbohydrates and is thought to control a number of serious illnesses) (MD). According to numerous studies and experiments, this type of diet is one of the most well studied by scientists of nutrition systems.

There are also less famous diets, such as: carbon free diet (a new diet that promotes the benefits of completely removing carbon and carbon derivatives from a person’s diet) (UD), goldfish diet (small eating portion diet) (UD), squirrel diet (a diet consisting of only fruits and nuts, also maybe the most beneficial) (UD), Atkins diet (a programme for losing weight by eating foods that contain a lot of protein or fat and few foods containing carbohydrate) (MD), organgodfood (UD) and its synonyms Organic diet, Vegan diet, God Christian diet, God diet (not eating meat, drinking or eating dairy; instead eating Organic eggs and fishes) (UD).

Some nutritional systems come under the notion of diet and it made us include them in this subgroup: intermittent fasting (eating nothing on some days and as normal on others, especially as an aid to weight loss) (MD), Buddha diet (a type of eating plan in which someone eats only during a nine-hour period each day and not at any other time, in order to lose body weight) (CDOB), the 5:2 diet (a way of losing weight that involves eating normally for five days a week and eating very little on the other two days) (MD), IIFYM (a type of a diet (often favoured by sportspeople) that allows people to eat what they want as long as their diet contains the right number of calories and macronutrients) (CDOB).

The list of diets is long and it even includes the neologism which names an anti-diet when you can eat anything especially junk food – American diet (UD).

Thus, the group of neologisms naming types of food includes four subgroups of neological units, which denote 1) meat, fish, vegetable, bread and flour dishes; 2) dishes from different national cuisines; 3) drinks; 4) food with specific components. The neological unit in the fourth group represent embraced in English-speaking society ideas of healthy/unhealthy nutrition and various points of view on different diets.

The lexical group “People”

The second group of English gastronomic neological units naming people falls into two subgroups. The first group name people as consumers of food and the second group name people who are employed to provide food consumption process.

The units in the first subgroup name gouments with their preferences as well as people keeping a special diet or using “special” food: gastrocrat (wealthy foodie) (CDOB), haloodie (a foodie who only eats halal food) (CDOB), vegivore (someone who loves eating vegetables but is not vegetarian or vegan) (MD), reducetarian (someone who is making a determined effort to eat less meat (and often other animal-derived products) (WS), demitarian (someone who restricts by half or to a marked degree, the amount of meat and animal products that they consume, usually in order to reduce the environmental impact of their diet) (CDOB), gluten-freegan (a person who consumes a gluten-free, vegan diet) (WS), climatarian (person whose diet consists primarily of foods that do not contribute to human-induced climate change) (WS), breakfastarian (someone who has the practice of eating breakfast foods at any meal and not merely the morning meal) (CDOB), perscetarian (a vegetarian who eats fish) (MD), vegemarian (one who believes in or practices the theory of a vegemarian diet) (UD), cravetarian (a person who is so in tune with their body they eat the healthy food it craves. Their eat habits are a combination of vegetarian, paleo, vegan and omnivore. They may eat a vegan diet for weeks and then change to an omnivore diet following what their body craves) (UD).

Some neologisms in this group distinguish gender stereotypes. For instance, the neological unit diet slut (UD) which denote someone, of female gender who goes on many diet attempts. She explores each diet for 24 hours but can never stick with it and jumps from diet to diet without regard for each diets feelings.

The neologism is a reflection of a gender stereotype about a female inconsistently and longing for a slender figure.

The neologisms of the second subgroup denote professions connected with gastronomic view of the world: mixologist (a bartender who is very good at creating new drinks) (MD), wine detective – someone whose job is to prove that wine is counterfeit) (CDOB).

These neologisms represent new gastronomic values in contemporary society. Golovnickaya (2007) describes these new values in the following way: “The chef is a designer of a new dish, the sommelier is a connoisseur of wines and dishes coupling, the bartender is an engineer of mixed drinks who like a professional actor juggles bottles, wineglasses and a drink shaker” (p. 213).

The number of units denoting people employed to provide a high-quality process of consumption is small for now as well as a number of people getting an esthetic enjoyment while eating food, as food is still thought a source of nutrition rather than an esthetic value.

The lexical group “Places of getting and taking food”

The third lexical group of neological units name places of getting and taking food. Among them are units denoting supermarkets, cafes, kinds of parties and even a writing desk used a place for breakfasting. Some units in the group are socially marked as the neologism social supermarket (a supermarket intended for people living in poverty where cut-price food is sold. The food is cheap because it has damaged packaging or incorrect labeling) (L), which is an example of a politically correct lexeme as it names a shop for low-income people.

Researchers distinguish different lexical groups within politically correct lexemes but they usually agree that the most important groups are those which name racial, gender and social differences (Vara & Tsaregorodtseva, &Volovikova, 2017; Onal, & Petrova, 2018). The neologisms show that the gastronomic discourse is mostly in contact with social differences.

Places of food taking named by neologisms can be classified according to food quality which is served there: food swamp (an area that has an abundance of fast food restaurants and other low-nutrition food options) (WS); a piece of furniture where food is taking: deskfast (breakfast eaten at one’s desk at work) (UD), type of food: pizza party, (a party where pizza is served) (MD), a thematic characteristic of the place (MD): cat cafe (a cat cafe is a warm and cozy cafe with coffee and pastries along side the company of friendly adoptable cats) (UD) or death café (a social gathering where people eat, drink, and discuss death) (WS), and the place the food is sold from: mobile food (prepared food sold from a truck on the street) (CDOB).

The gastronomic neologism analysis has detected neological units naming new kinds of leisure activity connected with food, among them is food rave (an informal gathering of friends, neighbours or even people who do not know each other where they prepare and/or taste food together) (MD).

The name comes from the English word rave – a party used in the 1960s and food. Literally, it is possible to translate it as a gourmet party. The idea of food rave is as follows: several teams gather in the same room equipped with a kitchen. Each has the same set of products and a limited amount of time. An experienced chef helps and commands. As a rule, during the evening, which is very cheerful, real culinary masterpieces are born. At the end, a winning team (which usually involves many spectators) is determined by a general vote, and everyone tastes the cooked meals. Then, everyone is treated with a dish from the chef. Actually, the idea of the food rave is companionship, as food is only a background for it.

Another new way of communication with the help of social networks and food is called social eating (a practice that involves filming yourself while you eat and posting or streaming it on a social media website) (CDOB). People all over the world are hosting dinners at home and through social networks and specialized sites invite strangers. One more lexeme – foodfie (a picture of what one eats, shared online; a blend of food and selfie) (MD) – is related to the theme of social networks influence on gastronomic habits.

The idea that consumption of food is connected with socialization in society is not new at all. Since ancient times, participation in a feast or getting an invitation to a dinner party in the company of a high-ranking official has been of great importance. Even what you eat determined your status.

The attitude to meal as an important part of socialization still exists in contemporary society but it has acquired a new sense. The above mentionedneological units are a reflection of a new eating style when a meal is thought to be a complementary process to a more important activity, entertainment, meeting or communication.

The lexical group “New technologies and devices”

Science and technology has contributed to the formation of gastronomic neologisms. These neologisms, naming 1) new technologies, 2) new foodstuff, and 3) new devices constitute the fourth group in the gastronomic view of the world.

The kind of edible food packaging is called WikiCell (a type of edible food packaging) (CDOB), and a bus using biomethane based on the processing of food waste is a bio-bus (CDOB) that runs on biomethane gas generated through the treatment of sewage and food waste.

Equally interesting is the phenomenon when technologies, are used to prepare, distribute and store food: сoldscape (technologies, buildings and other artificial sources of cold used for the preparation, distribution, and storage of food) (WS).

The gastronomic neologisms also reflect the emergence of new genetically modified food: golden rice (a genetically engineered form of rice with enhanced levels of vitamin A) (L).

The age of new technologies has led not only to the dominance in the English language of such a way of word formation as blending but also the combination of kitchen accessories or processes as one whole. The new devices are supposed to simplify the process of cooking: spork (a utensil that is a combination of spoon and fork) (MD), spoonula (a kitchen implement that is like a spatula but has a spoon-shaped end rather than a flat end) (MD), cook processor (a piece of kitchen equipment that both processes (e.g. by chopping or kneading) and cooks food) (L), spiralizer (a machine used in the kitchen for cutting vegetables very thinly) (MD).

The words of modern coinage naming new technologies, devices and foodstuffs are a result of science and technology progress influence on the gastronomic view of the world.

Conclusion

Thus, the acts of communication that accompany the processes of obtaining, processing, and consuming food products by cooking, in their national and cultural originality, constitute a gastronomic view of the world which distinguishes four main semantic groups: 1) types of food, 2) people; 3) places of getting and taking food; 4) kitchen devices. The groups represent both universal long-termed food values (food as a set of dishes) and new food values, which have appeared in English-speaking society recently (food as a source of aesthetic pleasure).

The representation of people in the gastronomic view of the world has a low nominative density in comparison with food representation. It reflects a fixed notion dew to which the gastronomic view of the world is thought as a set of dishes where a person, a consumer, has a secondary part.

As an important part of modern society, the gastronomic view of the world intersects other fields of human activity (science and technology) and reflects in gastronomic neologisms gender, social, science and technology, political, cultural, and esthetical standards of modern society some of which are judgmentally evaluated.

The study of gastronomic view of the world contributes to a sophisticated understanding of the language sign cultural code and all cultural attitudes and traditions.

References

Copyright information

About this article

Cite this paper as:

Click here to view the available options for cite this article.

Publisher

European Publisher

First Online

20.04.2020

Doi

10.15405/epsbs.2020.04.02.36

Online ISSN

2357-1330