Jeremy Strong in The Conversation:
Jeanette Winterson’s trapping and cooking of a rabbit has led the author into a heated dispute. Posting an image of the skinned animal on her kitchen counter with the comment “Rabbit ate my parsley. I am eating the rabbit” caused such a furore that she was invited on to BBC Radio 4’s World at One to defend her position. “I’ve had at least 100 tweets a minute since Sunday, I’m deluged with it”, she said.
As Winterson observes of those who have branded her “sick”, the problem seems not to be that she has prepared an animal for the pot, but that she undertook all the stages (capture, slaughter, preparation, cooking) herself. What’s remarkable about this is that the act concerned was once – and not all that long ago – utterly unremarkable.
The way we think about food appears to have completely changed. The plethora of glossy television programmes about cooking elide a key fact: that the regular practice of household cookery, let alone hunter-gathering, continues to decline. (Joanna Blythman’s book Bad Food Britain offers a useful summary of this national malaise.)
There’s an irony here that’s hard to miss.