Habits and orders of everyday life: commensal adjustment in Anglo-French couples

Alan Warde, Isabelle Darmon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

119 Downloads (Pure)


This paper examines processes of habit reshuffling and change in different contexts of household formation, looking specifically at habits regarding eating and commensality. It is based on a study of 14 couples, each with one English and one French partner, half of whom live in France, half in England. We examine the interplay between partners, their determination to eat together as a couple, and the various ‘orders’ associated with their commensal pact (diets, routines, extra-marital commensality), both when they start as couples and as parents of young children. We draw on the specificity of cross-national couple experience to cast light on processes of adjustment – to one another, and to the new country of residence for the migrant partner. In particular, we explore the potential of notions of ‘split’ and ‘solid’ ‘patrimonies of incorporated habits’, ‘re-shuffling’ of habits and dispositions, and ‘habit memory’, to characterise the dynamics of habits at play in each of the orders under scrutiny. Overall, the paper contributes to the analysis of habit as the ‘stuff’ of orders of everyday life.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1025
Number of pages1042
JournalBritish Journal of Sociology
Issue number3
Early online date17 Apr 2018
Publication statusPublished - 17 Apr 2018


Dive into the research topics of 'Habits and orders of everyday life: commensal adjustment in Anglo-French couples'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this