CFP ASFS Panel in June 2018: Food on the Move


Shayan Lallani and Kerri Lesh  are looking for a third panelist who might be able to fit their panel theme of “food on the move.” This is for submission to the ASFS/AFHVS annual conference from June 14-17 in Madison, Wisconsin. 
Kerri Lesh writes: Both of our abstracts involve food as a product that travels and or changes over the course of time.  Here are our abstracts:

1. Over the last decade there have been shifts in the dining preferences of middle-class American cruise passengers. I employ user posts from the online board CruiseCritic’s “Cruise Foodies” sub-forum to show that, in the first decade of the twenty-first century, passengers demonstrated a strong preference for flexible onboard dining including variety, quantity, and service around-the-clock. Many remained aware that logistical challenges—like those pertaining to the use of fresh and local ingredients onboard—meant cruise food would be inherently ‘inauthentic.’ Thus, while they desired authenticity, they primarily looked for it at ports, demonstrating a distrust of corporations. In the next decade, cruise lines advanced a project to bring ethnically themed dining experiences onboard as a way of transforming ships into spaces for cultural immersion. I argue that cruise lines used this ‘authenticity project’ as an alternate means of bringing perceived authenticity to those who demanded it—a workaround for otherwise impractical logistical changes. Passengers increasingly contemplated the authenticity of onboard fare in the second decade, a shift that coincided with the authenticity project. While some perceived cruise ships as spaces where they could encounter a range of cultures in “authentic” ways, many rejected the idea, continuing to point to the logistical challenges that made cruise food inauthentic in the first place. Thus, the project largely failed to appease middle-class tourists searching for authenticity. They continued looking to ports, though past the commodified “front regions,” to satisfy the penchant for local flavors that corporations could not provide.

2. As foodstuffs travel or are imitated across the world, disputes and legal issues have arisen between producers and the regions in which these products are sold.  These foods and beverages include wine know as Champagne, Pisco from South America, and Manchego cheese sold in two different continents. My focus will be on a beverage that few are aware of, but that plenty of people drink called Txakoli/Chacoli-depending on where it is produced and who is producing it.  Because this beverage is not linked exclusively to “place”, it is difficult to define it, and has also been difficult to control, and who has a right to use this name. 

The immigration of the Basque people to Chile brought parts of their culture, to include this fermented beverage that has been historically produced in various regions of Chile.  There are several factors differentiating the product depending on where it is produced.  There are similarities and differences that exist to create distinct products that share the same name, but not the same spelling.  It is in the orthographic difference, along with various production processes, that one can distinguish the place from which this fermented beverage is produced.  I will focus on the importance of this orthographic difference in creating products that to the ear appear to be one in the same, but to the eyes create distinction, and discuss the various associations that follow as a consequence.

Please email with your abstract by Friday, Feb. 9th.  Thank you!

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