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This paper reviews a survey on changes in household food practices conducted by the authors. This survey is original in two ways. The first of these is its desire to bridge the gap between two major theoretical frameworks, often presented as irreconcilable. These are, on the one hand, Bourdieu’s approach, linking consumption practices to the social dispositions of individuals, acquired through experience throughout their social trajectory (social status, position in life cycle), and, on the other, the French economic sociology approach inspired by the sociology of science developed by Michel Callon and Franck Cochoy, which links consumption practices to the effect of technical and market mechanisms on consumer decisions. We wanted to understand the changes in food consumption practices both in the light of individuals’ trajectories and their recurrent encounters with market or public mechanisms designed to orient them. To articulate these two approaches, we therefore constructed a specific methodological approach—this is the second original feature of our work—in order to create dialogue between quantitative and qualitative data, by illuminating one by the other, recurrently. It is in this way that we were able to reach conclusions about the role of mechanisms of prescription (social or market-based) and the effects of social trajectories in explaining food practices and their evolution. We conclude that while these conditions have an effect on changes in food practice, these changes are very largely conditioned by the dispositions of the individuals who take them up.

Sophie Dubuisson-Quellier
Séverine Gojard
Marie Plessz
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Uploaded on on 30/11/-0001
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