Date of Award

Spring 2012

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Master of Arts

First Advisor

Jason Sokol


This thesis explores whether the women's movement changed how men and women interacted with food between 1963 and 1981. Through the examination of popular magazines Esquire and Mademoiselle , this thesis analyzes articles and advertisements to gauge where there was change. Men's relationship with food did not change. Men continuously cooked only as a hobby, recreating dishes they ate at fine-dining restaurants promoting themselves as connoisseurs. On the other hand, women experienced positive and negative changes as well as stagnation. Sexual liberation allowed women to embrace the sexual connotations of food for the first time in over a century. Yet, women still remained subservient in the home as they kept their role as primary food preparer. Women also experienced an increased pressure on women to control their food consumption in order to be thin by the 1970s. During the first leg of the women's movement, women were somewhat constricted by their relationship with food.