Thursday, March 01, 2007

Northern Chinese diet and civilization

Northern Chinese traditional diet is very limited compared to other parts of world. Traditionally they only eat domesticated plants and animals. Wild animals and plants are not part of their diet. Most food is processed extensively and well-cooked with many procedures and steps.

Northern Chinese often use food as way to judge a civilization. In their mind, raw food or food from wild is only for uncivilized barbarians. Human raised animals and cultivated plants in field are symbols of civilized people. Hunter and gatherer society which only take what nature can provide is absolute barbarian in their eyes. Raw meat uncooked is only for animal or barbarian to eat. The life style of hunter and gatherer is very similar to that of wild animal.

Northerner Chinese call southern Chinese `barbarian’ due to southerner’s habit of eating wild animal meats. Northerners also think most foreigners as semi-civilized / semi-barbaric people due to raw meat in their diet such as under cooked beef in western diet, sushi with raw and wild fish in Japanese diet. Barbecue is simple and primitive cooking method, not much different from cave men’s cooking.

In modern day, such perception has changed.

However such perception has its own merit defining human evolution.

Who dares to chanllenge conventional view or genius could become anothergenius.