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Everything else, it’s work ”Socio-cultural dimensions of terroir among Bordeaux winemakers


In 2010, the OIV adopted a resolution that defines ‘terroir’. The OIV definition understands terroir as the result of the interactions between the physical specificities of a space and human labor, with an emphasis on the subsequently produced collective knowledge (OIV-VITI 333-2010); by doing so, it alludes to the social and cultural dimensions of terroir. On the basis of ethnographic fieldwork with winemakers in France and the United-States, our paper discusses some of these socio-cultural dimensions by focusing on specific vitivinicultural practices (pre- and post-harvest, such as irrigation, the use of fertilizers, fermentation, filtration, etc) and on the ways in which they intersect with winemakers’ conceptions and beliefs related to the space in which they work, to their profession, and to the good they produce, i.e. wine. This focus on meaningful practices, i.e. on the social and cultural dimensions of vitivinicultural practices, will help us understand the different dimensions of terroir, informed not only by science and technique, but also by the various (and often mixed) ways in which winemakers conceive of their professional activity.

Publication date: September 21, 2023

Issue: Terroir 2012

Type: Article


Sarah DAYNES1,*, Terry WILLIAMS2

1 University of North Carolina Greensboro
2 New School for Social Research, New York

Contact the author


Vitivinicultural practices, Bordeaux, Sociology


IVES Conference Series | Terroir | Terroir 2012


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