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“You’re quite a gourmet, aren’t you, Palmer?”: masculinity and food in the spy fiction of Len Deighton

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


<mark>Journal publication date</mark>1/07/2012
<mark>Journal</mark>Yearbook of English Studies
Issue numbern/a
Number of pages19
Pages (from-to)30-48
<mark>Original language</mark>English


In this paper, the novel and film of Len Deighton's 1962 spy novel The IPCRESS File, along with Len Deighton's Action Cookbook (reprints of newspaper strips that were purposely designed for a young, male audience) will be analysed as diagnostic texts, revealing a peculiarly British (or even English) variant on a new affluent and aspirational masculinity formed in the late 1950s and the beginning of the 1960s, where the explicit disaffection of the previous decade (the ‘Angry Young Man’ or the bohemian) is mediated into consumption, the pleasures of degustation, and a laconic ‘cool’.