Archive for December 14th, 2014

December 14, 2014

Pizza Effect

general tso

The pizza effect is a term used especially in religious studies and sociology for the phenomenon of elements of a nation or people’s culture being transformed or at least more fully embraced elsewhere, then re-imported back to their culture of origin, or the way in which a community’s self-understanding is influenced by (or imposed by, or imported from) foreign sources.

It is named after the idea that modern pizza was developed among Italian immigrants in the United States (rather than in native Italy where in its simpler form it was originally looked down upon), and was later exported back to Italy to be interpreted as a delicacy in Italian cuisine. Other culinary examples include chicken¬†tikka masala, popularized in the UK before gaining prominence in India, and General Tso’s chicken, a dish unknown in China before it was introduced by chefs returning from the States.

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