Rick Bayless as a Cultural Vampire in the TV Series Mexico, One Plate at a Time

Andrew R. Holzman


In Mexico, One Plate at a Time, Rick Bayless presents himself as a tour guide who exports an idealized version of Mexican culture for the U.S. bourgeois seeking an escape from his/her banal work-driven existence. Viewers can see Marx’s “commodity fetishism” and Žižek’s cultural vampirism, since Bayless acts like a “vampire” by sucking Mexico’s cultural heritage up and ripping its gastronomy out of its local context, making the complicated geopolitical relationship between both cultures invisible. To corroborate this, the author juxtaposes the representation of gastronomical products with historical-anthropological sources to trace their trajectory of commercialization.


commodity fetishism; cultural appropriation; Rick Bayless; cultural capital; taste discrimination

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22201/cisan.24487228e.2018.2.345


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