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“Human Behavior Remains A Mystery to Me”: 20 Years of Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential

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In case you missed it, over at The Ringer I wrote about the 20th anniversary of Anthony Bourdain’s industry-disrupting “Kitchen Confidential”, the memoir which set into motion his remarkable second career as a cultural ambassador.

In the just over two years since his tragic death, Bourdain has taken on a near-mythic stature as an emissary for food culture, an individual whose far-flung televised travelogues evolved over time from carousing misadventures into full-blown celebrations of genuine cultural exchange. By the time of his death, Bourdain had played a pivotal role in the mainstreaming and democratization of food culture, essentially bulldozing centuries-old elitist notions of fine dining by dint of his fierce advocacy and boundless enthusiasm. Bourdain’s overarching hypothesis—that political and social inequality could be both better understood and significantly redressed through an investigation of what and how we eat—has become so widely accepted that it can be strange to reflect that just two decades previous these ideas were largely alien. His big move from workaday chef to revolutionary frontiersman began in earnest 20 years ago, and the journey it would take him and his audience on was breathtaking.

Check it out if you think it might, in the words of Stephen Stills, thrill you to the marrow!

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