I can hardly believe it, but Diners, Dudes, and Diets: How Gender and Power Collide in Food Media and Culture has been out in the world for four months today. I am overwhelmed with gratitude for everyone who helped me to research, write, revise, publish, and promote this book. Below are the Acknowledgments that appear at the end of Diners, Dudes, and Diets.
I could not have written this book without the support of a great many people.
I thank Warren Belasco, Carole Counihan, and Rachel Black for their mentorship while I was at Boston University and their support in all the years since.
I am grateful to Brown University’s Graduate School for the University Fellowship that made it possible for me to research and write full time while pursuing my PhD. I warmly thank Susan Smulyan, Richard Meckel, and Debbie Weinstein, a trio of historians, who richly transformed my methods for studying the present as they provided critical feedback and unending support. Susan knows how much she means to me, so I will not embarrass her further here.
I thank the five women in my PhD cohort—Alyssa Anderson, Felicia Bevel, Kate Dufy, Suzanne Enzerink, and Diza Rule. They know all the reasons why.
I thank Elizabeth Hoover for saying yes when I wanted to launch Food Studies at Brown and for being the perfect pairing to my orderliness.
I also thank Ralph Rodriguez for showing me that radical love inspires transformative teaching and learning. That hope is part of this book’s aim too.
I thank Matt Guterl for being a text message away for advice (still), and for introducing me to my editor, Mark Simpson-Vos at the University of North Carolina Press. I thank Mark, Kathleen LeBesco, Peter Naccarato, and one anonymous reader who helped me to complete the revisions on this book, my first, a task many presses and readers shy away from.
At UNC Press, I also thank Cate Hodorowicz and Dominique Moore (who’s now at UIP) in Acquisitions, as well as Dino Battista, Ann Bingham, Anna Faison (who’s now started a new venture), Gina Mahalek (who is now enjoying retirement), and Alison Shay in Marketing, for all they have done (and will do!) to support this book. I thank Kim Bryant and Matt Avery for my book’s cover and interior design. I also thank Diane Cipollone for copy editing and Kate Gibson for production editing.
I am grateful to Jessica Ryan for proof editing and Michelle Martinez for indexing—and to the University of Tulsa’s Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, the Kendall College of Arts and Sciences, and the Department of Media Studies for funding them.
At The University of Tulsa, I thank Joli Jensen for the Faculty Writing Program that helped so many of us to write no matter what and all the members of the Department of Media Studies—Zenia Kish, Justin Rawlins, Mark Brewin, Ben Peters, John Coward, Jennifer Jones, Jan Reynolds, and Amy Howe—for their genuine collegiality. I also thank TU for Faculty Development Summer Fellowships in 2019 and 2020.
I thank all my students, at TU and at Brown, who’ve shared in this book’s ideas in classes on advertising, popular culture, and food media, especially Val Hinkle who designed preorder promotional materials.
I first presented many of the ideas in this book at the annual meetings of the Association for the Study of Food and Society. At these conferences, I’ve been fortunate to find critical feedback, helpful comments, mentors, friends, and memorable meals. It’s a community so meaningful I’ve happily dedicated many hours to serving it. I also thank Zingerman’s and all the women connected to Fresh Work and HHH Retreat, especially Ander Wilson.
I thank Diana Garvin, Rachal Laudan, and KC Hysmith for their feedback on chapters and concepts, Julia Ehrhardt, Melissa Hackman, and Warren Belasco for their helpful notes on the entire manuscript, all of them for their friendship.
I’m grateful for my rescue pup writing buddy, Raven, who snuggled next to me all the years I worked on this book.
I also thank my mother, who has not only read every word of this book (more than once) but quite literally every word I’ve ever written. Along with my academic peers and students, she is the smart everyday reader for whom I try to write, without too much jargon and with some style and a little humor. (She liked this book, but she is my mom so perhaps she has to say that.)
Without the love of my mother, father, sister, and husband this book wouldn’t exist. Despite the many hours I spent writing (and revising and revising) this book instead of spending more time with them, I hope they are glad that it does.
Beyond the book’s printed acknowledgements, I’m also so thankful to everyone who preordered the book. You helped me to sell out the first print run ahead of launch day!
I’m also thankful for folks who’ve reviewed the book in public spaces like Amazon and Goodreads. Apparently such reviews matter as I think about writing a second and a third book, so I humbly ask others to write such reviews, and please let me send you a postcard as thanks!
I still can’t believe that Helen Rosner included the book in her Great Food-ish Nonfiction 2020 list, that Matthew Wheeland reviewed it in Civil Eats’ 2020 Food and Farming Holiday Book Gift Guide, or that Food Tank featured it in their Summer 2020 Reading List. Thank you!
I’m also grateful to the journalists and writers who’ve interviewed me about the book, including Rachel Sugar for Vox; Ashlie Stevens for Salon; Anne Helen Petersen for Culture Study; Séverine Pierron for Elle (France); Dana Ferrante for BU Today; Connor Goodwin for Inside Hook; James Watts for the Tulsa World; Madeline Humphrey for The Daily Free Press; and Jesse Haynes for The University of Tulsa News.
I also thank outlets that published pieces related to the book, including Nursing Clio for publishing an excerpt from the book’s intro and this great interview with one of my favorite college professors Julia Ehrhardt; Meredith Bennett-Smith for inviting me to publish an op-ed for NBC News; Dianne Jacob for publishing a piece on Will Write for Food; Marshal Zeringue for inviting my contribution to the The Page 99 Test; and Kelly Faircloth at Jezebel for inviting me to write about gender and diet sodas, and then letting me pitch to write about trophy kitchens and bro-gurt too.
I also appreciated the University of Oklahoma Honors College and Bostonia: The Boston University Alumni Magazine covering news of the book. I’m grateful that the book was favorably reviewed (and very quickly!) in Men and Masculinities. I’m also very grateful to Advertising & Society Quarterly for featuring the book in an Author Meets Critics session, which will be published in the Spring 2021 issue.
I’m also so thankful for the folks who’ve invited me on podcasts and radio, including: Soleil Ho, Justin Phillips, and Erica Carlos of Extra Spicy from the San Francisco Chronicle; Nicky Twilley and Cynthia Graber of Gastropod; Christy Harrison of FoodPsych; Joan Salge Blake of Spot On!; Carrie Helms Tippen of New Books Network, Food; Rich Fisher of StudioTulsa on Public Radio Tulsa; Bob LeDrew of Can I Have a Word? on CKCU FM 93.1 in Canada; Sarah Duignan of AnthroDish; the womxn of Femidish; and Ann & Peter Haigh of On the Menu; as well as Madhvi and Rina of Ms Informed.
Thank you to everyone who’s invited me to give talks and participate in book events, including Magic City Books; Elizabeth Neswald and the Department of History Speaker Series at Brock University; Emily Schumacher of Lambda Alpha at The University of Tulsa; The University of Tulsa Community Lecture Series; Gurpinder Lalli and Julie Parsons of the British Sociological Association Food Studies Group International Seminar Series; Megan Elias and Barbara Rotger of the Boston University Pepin Lecture Series; John Wills for the Annual Bolt Lecture at the University of Kent; and Allison Surgeary of the Center for Women’s History at the New York Historical Society; plus upcoming events thanks to the Graduate Association for Food Studies Reading Collective; Polly Russell at the British Library; and the University of Oregon’s Food Studies Program and Department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies.
Thank you to Karen Tongson at the University of Southern California, Sarah Dempsey at the University of North Carolina, and Ben Cohen at Lafayette College for assigning my book in their courses and for inviting me to chat with their wonderful students. (And please know that I’m happy to virtually visit classes that read my book!)
I promise to write more in the future about the art and labor of book promotion, to share what I’m learning with others. Till then, I’m brimming full of gratitude for all of this, and for all of you.