Opinion : Please Don’t Call It Food P#rn!
I post a lot of food images online. (My name IS Gourmet Girlfriend, after all!) You will find these images on my blog, right alongside my recipes. You may spot them on my Facebook page, Twitter or, if you follow me, on Instagram too. Food galore. Yum. These images are a big part of what I do and what I write about. I love to see the beauty in the things around me and I include food in my very favourite things.
If you read my blog you will quickly deduce that food, to me, is about sharing something with the people I love. It’s about sharing the joy of life. It’s about taking care of people I care about. It’s about giving. Yes, the food is often beautiful, but the intention behind the meal is about so much more than the food itself (however delicious it may look/be!)
Deliciousness turned to discomfort when someone recently tagged one of my food images with the hashtag #foodp*rn. It felt so far from my own relationship with food that I felt the need to write about it.
I would NEVER use the term #foodpo*n alongside any of my images. I find the term abhorrent. I understand that it’s a term used to describe things people find beautiful. I know it is intended as a compliment. But I don’t see it that way. In fact I find it really, really upsetting!
Po#n is an industry that can be ANYTHING but beautiful. It is (often) based solely on sexual gratification. It is about money. It is about power. (Before you get all ranty on me, I KNOW there are elements of this industry that are safe and that some employees are well looked after. Generally, however, it is still an industry that doesn’t have a great reputation, may not treat its workers as well as it should and is often, by nature, part of a decidedly ugly element of society.)
Po#n is about all kinds of things that seem far removed from my own foodie motivations.
When did we become so desensitized as a society, that the choice of words to describe images of beautiful food (and other things) is now aligned with an industry based on sexual gratification which is very often ANYTHING but beautiful? Is food really about sexual gratification? Have you ever stopped to think about the strange alignment of these two things? And have we chosen to close our eyes to the often ugly industry that lies behind the term?
I am not naïve, I know that some people won’t get my side of the story. I know that some people won’t understand my discomfort with the alignment of food images with graphic sexual imagery/language. I know that some people will call me prudish. That’s ok. I also know a lot of people agree with me, that a lot of people also find the term foodp#rn cringe worthy. I know I am not alone.
By all means come on by and read my blog, look at my images on Instagram or Facebook but please don’t ever use the term #foodporn . It REALLY REALLY upsets me.
Gourmet Girlfriend blogs quite regularly about food and family life from her Melbourne kitchen table. She’s a clog loving, Marimekko coveting, coffee sipping culinary superstar. She’s the mother of five awesome boys and the wife of one man. Phew!