Post Doc Fellowships in Early Modern Foodways

The Folger Shakespeare Library has announced three post doctoral fellowships as part of a research project on early modern foodways. The project, entitled “Before ‘Farm to Table’: Early Modern Foodways and Cultures,” is part of the library’s Mellon Initiative in Collaborative Research. Find more details here and here or by following the links below.

The Folger Shakespeare Library seeks to hire three post-doctoral fellows for a multi-year collaborative and cross-disciplinary research project entitled “Before ‘Farm to Table’: Early Modern Foodways and Cultures.” This is the inaugural project in the Folger Shakespeare Library’s Mellon Initiative in Collaborative Research. It is headquartered in the Folger Institute, whose mission is to foster vital research questions, gather knowledge communities, and stimulate collections-based research. The Folger Shakespeare Library is home to the world’s largest Shakespeare collection and supports research on all aspects of British, European, and Atlantic world literary, cultural, political, religious, theatrical, and social history from the fifteenth through the eighteenth centuries. “Before ‘Farm to Table’: Early Modern Foodways and Cultures” will investigate the pervasiveness of food in everyday life as a window into early modern culture, addressing such issues as labor, freedom and enslavement, practical knowledge, ethics, and imagination. These perspectives from a pre-industrial world will shed light on critical post-industrial dilemmas and aspirations. Additional information on the research project may be found at http://www.folger.edu/mellon-initiative-collaborative-research.  The postdoctoral fellows are expected to begin work in September 2018. The positions are renewable for three academic years (through June 2021).

Applicants must hold a recent (within 5 years) Ph.D. in early modern (c. 1450-1750) studies; specific disciplines may include art history, anthropology, food studies, history, literature, philosophy. A successful candidate will bring his or her own individual research to bear on collective decisions about projects in this innovative research initiative. The three post-doctoral fellows will work closely with the project’s co-directors and will be responsible for defining and pursuing research agendas, helping to select short-term fellows and other project associates, and creating scholarly and public programs as well as print and online products. We aim to assemble an interdisciplinary team of post-docs with a diversity of cognate interests and approaches, who will engage in independent and collaborative research, writing, and experimentation. Post-docs will share their findings in a variety of formats and with a variety of audiences, assist with organizing scholarly programs and public events at the Folger, and contribute to online digital projects and exhibitions. Additional information on the specific post-docs and a link to detailed descriptions and application instructions are included below.

The three post-doctoral fellows will be considered employees of the Folger and will receive a generous salary of $5,416.67 per month (equivalent to 65K per year) and a comprehensive benefits package. Housing and/or relocation assistance cannot be provided. Six months of paid individual research and writing time is included, and there will be specific opportunities provided throughout the post-doc period to participate in scholarly conferences and events.

Digital Research Fellow (one fellowship available):

The Digital Research Fellow will be tasked with developing, building, and trialing a structure for accessing and researching texts, images, and metadata relating to the major themes of the project, with an emphasis on the Folger’s unique collection of food-related manuscripts. Working closely with co-directors and Folger stakeholders, the post-doc will help establish and implement editorial and mark-up conventions for creating a searchable corpus of food-related texts and images. The corpus will provide quantitative and qualitative data for the team’s innovative explorations of a wide range of issues in food pathways and cultures of the period through a variety of techniques, including data mining, data visualization, mapping, network analysis, and text analysis.

Demonstrated knowledge and experience with technologies and standards used in digital humanities scholarship such as TEI markup, data visualization, text and network analysis, and common scripting languages, is required. Relevant experience in developing and leading digital humanities research projects is preferred. Applicants should be able to read and transcribe English secretary hand at an advanced level and mark up texts according to TEI: P5 guidelines. Ability to work in a team environment where consultation, flexibility, creativity, and cooperation is essential, as is the ability to manage multiple priorities and tasks.

To learn more about the Digital Research Fellowship and to apply for the position, please visit http://www.folger.edu/employment-opportunities.

Research Fellows (two fellowships available):

The Research Fellows will be tasked with conducting in-depth research into designated topics. Working closely with the co-directors, each will establish priorities for research and writing and will ensure that these goals are met in line with project needs. They will continually evaluate new ideas in light of the scope of the project, conduct project-related research, write and publish individually and collaboratively with other team members and co-directors, and report on results at team meetings and other activities. These fellows will engage with internal and external partners to create, monitor, and enhance an engaging and interactive online resource on their research topics while thinking creatively about the ways that early modern food cultures resonate with modern ones.

Applicants must have an understanding of early modern print and manuscript cultures. A demonstrated ability to read and transcribe English secretary hand is desirable. Project work, research, or familiarity with food histories, representations, cultures, etc. in the early modern period is strongly preferred. Applicants must have experience and fluidity with social media outreach in scholarly communities and an enthusiasm for introduction to academic-adjacent career paths, including academic administration, specialized library work, and the organization of and promotion of public programs events. Working knowledge of Word and Excel needed. Ability to work in a team environment where consultation, flexibility, creativity, and cooperation is essential, as is the ability to manage multiple priorities and tasks.

To learn more about the Research Fellowships and to apply for the positions, please visit http://www.folger.edu/employment-opportunities.

Application requirements include a cover letter, resume/CV and three letters of recommendation. Application deadline is December 1, 2017.

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CFP: Leaving the Conversation: intersections of food, fermentation, and feminism

CALL FOR PAPERS |  Special issue of CuiZine: the Journal of Canadian Food Cultures “LEAVENING THE CONVERSATION: intersections of food, fermentation, and feminism” Appel à soumissions | numéro thématique de CuiZine : la revue des cultures culinaires au Canada.

« Des idées qui fermentent : aux croisements de la nourriture, de la fermentation, et du féminisme »

DEADLINE FOR RESEARCH ABSTRACTS: TUESDAY, October 10, 2017

ÉCHÉANCE POUR LES RÉSUMÉ D’ARTICLES DE RECHERCHE: MARDI, 10 OCTOBRE, 2017

(la version française suit l’anglais)

Food is a medium. Like conventional examples of media, food carries both content and relational messages that are produced, distributed, and consumed frequently and widely. As content, foods are the literal vehicles for delivering messages that are subsequently decoded and digested into meaningful units. Once absorbed, food-as-content can then be repurposed and mobilized by bodies, recirculating nutrients where needed. Fermented foods, in particular, act as a medium that interfaces between humans, microbes, and microbial foods. As a transformative process, fermentation incorporates multiple species, multiple senses, and multiple scales. As a metaphor, it operates as a productive figure for speculation and experimentation. Fermented foods also carry meaning and, as such, play into the relational and identity politics of the everyday eater. Here, a feminist lens provides a complex understanding of how the material and the discursive are constructed in and through food rituals, performatives, and customs. Where heteronormative ideologies dictate and prescribe, feminism and fermentation are grounded in the affective, the sensorial, and the peripheral. Thus, food, fermentation, and feminism literally and metaphorically figure into each other.

At the core of each of these domains –food, fermentation, and feminism– are binaries that animate dominant paradigms and power structures. Food is characterized by good/bad aesthetics, health/junk parameters, gourmet/street, and conventional/organic ideologies. Fermentation deals with human/nonhuman, self/other, and mind/body dualisms. Lastly, feminism is equally haunted by gender binaries, public/private spheres, productive/reproductive labor, affect/intellect, though many feminist scholars are actively collapsing these to propose alternate framings. We ask the question, what are the intersections between fermentation and feminism? How can material and discursive shifts in these domains be leavened with the type of complexity that supports social change?

This special issue will have a firm focus on the intersections of food, feminism, and fermentation. This could mean papers that examine how food mediates and how it (re)negotiates assumptions about subversion and agency. It can also mean papers that apply a critical/feminist lens to processes of transformation, care, and working-with. Papers can also be a theoretical endeavor of bringing these three worlds together and examining ideological contact zones. We are interested to know about food, feminism, and fermentation as complex models for thinking beyond the ontological binaries to which they are often bound. We are curious about epistemological frameworks that compare how knowledge(s) are produced and circulated in order to rearrange our thinking about expertise, practices, and identities.

Some topics of interest include (but are not limited to):

  • foods performing feminism, or vice versa
  • fermentation as a feminist intervention
  • transformative and/or disruptive processes
  • intersectionality and ferments
  • the gendering of food/ferments
  • notions of gender and purity/contamination
  • nourishment and/or feminist notions of care
  • bodies as unbound and porous
  • microbial agency and relational politics
  • heteronormativity and ferments
  • ferments and questions of scale
  • food, fermentation, and intimacy
  • gustatory/sexual consumption
  • food, participation, and agency
  • circulation of affect and praxis
  • food activism and materiality
  • radical media and microbes
  • changing gender roles over who is fermenting/ performing this labor

We welcome abstracts from a variety of fields, including communication studies, gender studies, cultural studies, history, anthropology, sociology, English, art, political science philosophy, life sciences, as well as other disciplines. We hope to gather ideas from a broad geographic range.

Submission Guidelines

Submissions can be in English and in French.

Please send an abstract (400-500 words) outlining the trajectory of the paper. Additionally, please include 3-5 keywords as well as a brief biography (max. 100 words).

Send all abstracts to food.feminism.fermentation[at]gmail.com with “CuiZine” in the subject line and please cc. cuizine@ustboniface.ca.

Abstracts due October 10, 2017.

 Guest Editors

Alex D. Ketchum, Department of History, McGill University

Maya Hey, Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University Timeline

Abstracts due ………………………………………………October 10, 2017

Authors notified ……………………………………………October 13, 2017

Author’s finished text for all research articles,

book reviews & creative works due ……………………….December 15, 2017

Papers assigned to blind peer-review ……………………… December 17, 2017

Reviewers finish comments; papers sent back to authors … February 15, 2018 Authors send final submissions to guest editors ………….. April 30, 2018 

Guest editors send completed manuscript to CuiZine ……. June 1, 2018 

(la version française)

La nourriture est un média. La nourriture, tout comme les autres médias plus traditionnels, transmet, produit, et véhicule des messages relationnels, ces derniers pouvant être consommés à petites et grandes échelles. La nourriture est aussi un contenu : d’une part, contenu au sens de message à communiquer, mais, d’autre part, littéralement, contenu, au sens de contenant. La nourriture constitue un véhicule pour les messages à décoder et à digérer, desquels on retire un certain sens. Une fois absorbée, la « nourriture-comme-contenu » peut alors être utilisée par le corps, qui en retire les nutriments au besoin. Les aliments fermentés, en l’occurrence, constituent un type de ‘média’ particulier, là où se rencontrent les humains, les microbes et les aliments d’origine microbienne. En tant que processus de transformation, la fermentation recoupe un certain nombre d’espèces, de sens, et d’échelles. En tant que métaphore, la fermentation rappelle la spéculation et l’expérimentation. Les aliments fermentés sont porteurs de sens et peuvent donc jouer un rôle dans les échanges relationnels et individuels du consommateur moyen. Un regard féministe permet d’élucider comment le matériel et le discursif sont construits à travers divers rituels alimentaires, diverses performances, et diverses coutumes. Alors que les idéologies hétéronormatives dictent et prescrivent, le féminisme et la fermentation sont ancrés dans l’affectif, le sensoriel, et la périphérie. La fermentation, le féminisme, la nourriture : une boucle qui se boucle tant sur le plan métaphorique que littéral.

Dans chaque domaine – l’alimentation, la fermentation, et le féminisme – on y retrouve des concepts binaires qui animent les paradigmes et les relations de pouvoirs. L’alimentation est souvent qualifiée comme étant « saine » ou « bonne » / « malsaine » ou « mauvaise ». Les aliments  sont  « bons »  ou  « mauvais »,  « gastronomes »  ou  « bas  de  gamme »  ou  même

« street », « transformés » ou « bios ». La fermentation, quant à elle, c’est le soi et l’autre, l’humain et le non-humain, le corps et l’esprit. Le féminisme est préoccupé par des conceptualisations binaires telles que le  public  et  le  privé,  le  travail  productif  et reproductif, l’affect et l’intellect, mais de plus en plus, les chercheurs et chercheuses dans ce domaine tente de démanteler ces concepts binaires. Nous nous intéressons donc aux questions suivantes : quels sont les intersections ou les croisements conceptuels entre la fermentation et le féminisme? Comment peut-on engendrer des changements sur les plans matériels et discursifs de manière à favoriser le progrès social, et ce, tout en ayant une appréciation complexe de ces divers changements?

Ce numéro spécial se concentra sur les croisements conceptuels et tangibles entre la nourriture, le féminisme, et la fermentation. Les analyses peuvent porter sur les aliments comme « médiateurs » de la subversion ou de l’autorité. Nous invitons aussi les réflexions féministes portant sur la transformation, le bien-être, et le collaboratif (« working with »). Les réflexions théoriques portant sur les trois thématiques et leurs zones de contacts sont également bienvenues. Nous concevons la nourriture, le féminisme, et la fermentation comme un modèle complexe pour aller au-delà des conceptualisations ontologiques binaires auxquelles ces domaines sont normalement associés. C’est avec curiosité et intérêt que nous réfléchirons sur les cadres épistémologiques qui produisent et font circuler les savoirs à propos de l’expertise, les pratiques et les identités.

Voici une liste des thèmes proposés (celle-ci ne se veut pas exhaustive) :

  • les aliments « qui performent » le féminisme (ou vice versa)
  • la fermentation comme intervention féministe
  • les processus transformatifs et perturbateurs
  • l’intersectionalité et les ferments
  • le genre, la nourriture, et les ferments (les aliments genrés)
  • les notions relatives au genre et la pureté/la contamination
  • l’alimentation et les notions féministes relatives aux soins/bien-être
  • les corps comme poreux et dissociés ou non-liés
  • les agents microbiens et la politique relationnelle
  • l’hétéronormativité et les ferments
  • les ferments et les échelles
  • la nourriture, la fermentation, et l’intimité
  • le plaisir gustatif et sexuel et sa consommation
  • la nourriture, la participation, et l’autorité
  • la circulation de l’affect
  • l’activisme et la matérialité
  • les médias radicaux et les microbes / agents microbiens
  • les rôles et les genres dans le travail lié à la fermentation

Nous acceptons des résumés d’une grande variété de disciplines, y compris: les communications, les études sur les genres, les études culturelles, l’histoire, l’anthropologie, la sociologie, English, les arts visuels, les sciences politiques, la philosophie, les sciences du vivant, etc. Nous souhaitons recevoir des contributions de la part d’auteurs aux horizons divers.

Consignes

Les soumissions peuvent être rédigées en français ou en anglais.

Veuillez faire parvenir un résumé de 400 à 500 mots décrivant les points importants de l’article. Veuillez inclure 3 à 5 mots clés. Veuillez également faire parvenir une note biographique (100 mots maximum). Si vous avez une version bilingue de votre note, n’hésitez pas à nous la fournir.

Veuillez faire parvenir les documents à food.feminism.fermentation@gmail.com avec cuizine@ustboniface.ca en cc. Veuillez indiquer ‘CuiZine’ dans le sujet de votre courriel.

Date d’échéance : 10 octobre 2017 

Co-rédactrices invitees

Alex D. Ketchum, Department of History, McGill University

Maya Hey, Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University Calendrier

Résumés d’articles…………………………………………………. 10 oct., 2017

Confirmation de l’acceptation ou du refus…………………………13 oct., 2017

Versions finales des articles et des comptes rendus ……………… 15 déc., 2017

Envoi pour évaluation par les pairs ………………………………… 17 déc., 2017

Envoi de la rétroaction aux auteurs ………………………………. 15 fév., 2018

Remise des version finales ………………………………………… 30 avril, 2018

Version finale du numéro acheminé à CuiZine ……………………. 1 juin, 2018

Date de publication provisoire………………………………automne / hiver 2018

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SfAA CFP: Sustainable Food Futures on Campus

In 2011, Peggy Barlett highlighted the state of campus sustainable food projects, pointing out the growth in dining innovations, student farms and gardens, and curricular and experiential food opportunities. Since then, campus food projects have further integrated critical perspectives, including student food security (Dubick, Mathews, and Cady 2016), food justice (Chollett 2014; Aftandilian and Dart 2013) and food sovereignty education (Meek and Tarlau 2016). This panel is an invitation to mark where we have been and where we are going in order to promote sustainable food futures within higher education and beyond. To gauge the promise of campus food projects, we ask: Are students carrying curricular, co-curricular, and experiential lessons into their post-college lives? What evidence do we have to evaluate the success of campus food projects, including their ability to transform dining service purchasing, students’ relationships to food, student food security, and food justice? Finally, do campus sustainable food projects ultimately promote the larger environmental, economic and social goals of sustainability?

If you’re interested in participating on this panel, please submit a 100 word abstract to Amanda Green at amgreen@davidson.edu by September 28, 2017. Earlier submissions are encouraged!

The panel will be submitted by October 10, 2017, to ensure we meet the final abstract submission deadline of October 15, 2017.

This year’s meeting takes place in Philadelphia, PA, April 3-7, 2018.

Find out more about the SfAA conference here: https://www.sfaa.net/annual-meeting/

 

Aftandilian, Dave and Lyn Dart. 2013. “Using Garden-Based Service-Learning to Work Toward Food Justice, Better Educate Students, and Strengthen Campus-Community Ties.” Journal of Community Engagement and Scholarship 6(1): 55-69.

Barlett, Peggy. 2011. “Campus Sustainable Food Projects: Critique and Engagement.” American Anthropologist 113(1): 101-115.

Chollett, Donna L. 2014. “The Native American Organic Garden: Using Service Learning as a Site of Resistance.” Culture, Agriculture, Food and Environment 36(2): 93-104.

Dubick, James, Brandon Mathews, and Clare Cady. 2016. “Hunger on Campus: The Challenge of Food Insecurity for College Students.” Available at: http://studentsagainsthunger.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Hunger_On_Campus.pdf

Meek, David and Rebecca Tarlau. 2016. “Critical food systems education (CFSE): educating for food sovereignty.” Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems 40(3): 237-260.

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NYU Food Studies Post Doc Opportunity

Here is a great opportunity for a recent PhD…note that anthropological perspectives are especially welcome!

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Department of Nutrition and Food Studies, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development, New York University (2018-19)

The Department of Nutrition and Food Studies at NYU invites applications from outstanding candidates for a full-time Postdoctoral Research Fellowship. The position is within the Food Studies Program. It is available for one year. Candidates must have an earned PhD, with potential for outstanding research or public scholarship in an area aligned with the department’s work as specified below:

GOALS and SUBJECT AREAS

  1. Advance the field of Food Studies
  • expand the boundaries of the field or sharpen its focus
  • demonstrate the importance of Food Studies for other disciplines and/or public engagement
  • advance the profile of Food Studies within NYU and outside it
  • strengthen networks with other Food Studies or relevant programs elsewhere
  1. Emphasis will be placed on the cultural and social elements of Food Studies
  • historical, modern and critical cultural, sociological, geographical, and anthropological approaches will be prioritized
  1. Selection will reward candidates whose work addresses local-global connections, particularly in urban centers
  • boundary crossing and exchange (intra and inter-ethnic, international, etc.)
  • global circulations of people, ideas, and products
  • city geographies, demographics, and food environments
  1. Particular attention will be paid to candidates whose work
  • merges aesthetic/cultural and economic/material dimensions
  • projects that engage seriously with taste, pleasure, and identity alongside issues of regulation, transportation, commercialization, or other biophysical aspects of food production and consumption
  • candidates who can show competency in using mapping software and have affinity for the digital humanities (e.g.: CartoDB; Omeka; etc.)

FELLOWSHIP RESPONSIBILITIES

Fellows will be expected to:

  • Continue research and expand their contribution to the field of Food Studies while at NYU
    • publish in appropriate academic journals
    • present in appropriate academic conferences
  • Play an active role in the Program, Department, broader NYU and Food Studies community
    • Present their research formally at least once during the year (ideally once per semester, in different formats and with different audiences)
  • attend and participate regularly in relevant talks within the department and beyond
  • nurture relationships with students and faculty
  • Teach one or two courses in a year (to be determined in discussion with the Chair and the Program Director)
  • Support the program for relevant initiatives (such as grant writing, aiding in partnership development and organizing colloquia).

Applicants must send:

1) CV (2-pages maximum)

2) two reference letters (to be sent directly to amy.bentley@nyu.edu and matt.vanzo@nyu.edu ),

3) a statement (2 pages) describing a one-year research plan, publication preparation or a public humanities plan.

The application package should be sent to matt.vanzo@nyu.edu and amy.bentley@nyu.edu (electronic submission of one complete PDF file is required).

Subject line should say Food Studies Postdoc.

The deadline for submission is November 15th 2017. If the search is successful the term will begin in September 2018 or soon after.

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CFP: Southern Cultures Special Issue on Coastal Foodways

This is a bit last minute, but seems like it may be of interest to SAFN writers and other readers of this blog:

Call for Papers
Special issue of Southern Cultures: Coastal Foodways
Spring 2018

Southern Cultures, the award-winning, peer-reviewed quarterly from UNC’s Center for the Study of the American South, encourages submissions from scholars, writers, and artists for our Coastal Foodways Issue, to be published Spring 2018. We will be accepting submissions for this special issue through October 3, 2017, at https://southerncultures.submittable.com/Submit .

This call aims to gather work that documents and understands the food and foodways-related issues of the southern coast, in its present moment, and in the voices of scholars, fishers and fishmongers, coastal activists, environmentalists, and communities broadly defined. We understand southern foodways to exist across many genres, disciplines, and collaborations and seek to expand the conversation to the interaction of peoples and cultures with the broader forces of political, social, historical, and economic change at work in the Atlantic and Gulf Souths. Global South analyses are welcome as well.

Submissions can explore any topic or theme related to southern coastal life, with a special interest in pieces that seek new understandings of the coast and its food cultures, identify current communities and concerns, and address its ongoing challenges. We welcome explorations of the region in the forms Southern Cultures publishes: scholarly articles, memoir, interviews, surveys, photo essays, and shorter feature essays.

Possible topics might include (but are not limited to):

  • The politics of evolving coastal food economies
  • Changing labor and fishing industry scenarios
  • Coastal tourism and real estate development issues
  • Climate change and sea rise, wetlands loss, and environmental degradation
  • Local seafood movement

As we also publish a digital edition, we are able to supplement essays with video, audio, and interactive visual content. We encourage creativity in coordinating print and digital materials in submissions and ask that authors submit any potential digital materials with their essay or introduction/artist’s statement.

We encourage authors to gain familiarity with the tone, scope, and style of our journal before submitting. Those whose institutions subscribe to Project Muse can read past issues for free via http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/southern_cultures/ . To read our current issue, access our submission guidelines, or browse our content, please visit us online at http://www.SouthernCultures.org/ .

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What FoodAnthro is Reading Now, September 15, 2017

Jo Hunter-Adams

A brief digest of food and nutrition-related items that caught our attention recently. Got items you think we should include? Send links and brief descriptions to dberiss@gmail.com or hunterjo@gmail.com.

To begin, Raj Patel writes of the devastation of industrial agriculture. Local is one important avenue in the face of industrial ag, and Strongtowns is an interesting place to go to find stories of strong local food systems: Firstly, this article describes some of the challenges of building local food systems to the point where they actually provide significant calories (and the long years of hard work and no income that often precede this point). Also on Strongtowns was this piece about nuns running a farm in western New York, which offers a glimpse at the many ways that small farms can be transformational. Brian Williams also offered some very helpful ways of thinking about local food in the context of food systems. Citiscopes also had this article on building resilience into local food systems in Baltimore and Washington D.C.. Across the world in Australia, Karenni refugees are showing what is possible by cultivating food in suburban spaces. Perhaps a little tangentially linked, insects continue to be a very hot area of (local) food systems change, as described in this NPR article about teaching kids about entomophagy.

I’m always struck by the various food “worlds” we’re trying to make sense of, and our role as food researchers showing how these worlds are connected and influence one another. For example, check out this video on surviving on R1000 ($74)/month in South Africa. This is juxtaposed with the power of South African breweries (SAB) and the recent StatsSA article in honour of our national beer day, which tracked spending and told us that we’re spending more on beer than on vegetables. In Venezuela, chronic hunger is currently affecting large portions of the population, and this in-depth article frames hunger politically.  Which is not to sidestep the persistent issue of hunger in wealthy countries, as described in the U.S. context here.

There are so many people working on food and nutrition, and here are just a couple of stories about food educators: Forbes interviewed Tambra Raye Stevenson about her work bringing together different threads of food activism. There was also this NYTimes article about nutrition education as a medical intervention.

As always, the medicalization of food and the quest for the perfect diet can lead us astray. This article in The Atlantic examines misinterpretation of nutritional studies:

When measuring diet, for example, lifelong randomized, controlled trials are impossible. Even if people would volunteer to change their diets for a decade or so—a period long enough that rates of death and cancer and heart attacks could be meaningful—it would be impossible to keep the research subjects blinded. Our perceptions of how well we’re eating change how we behave in a lot of other ways.

Relatedly, Bee Wilson had this excellent article about the [debunked but cultlike] phenomenon of Clean Eating :

But it quickly became clear that “clean eating” was more than a diet; it was a belief system, which propagated the idea that the way most people eat is not simply fattening, but impure. Seemingly out of nowhere, a whole universe of coconut oil, dubious promises and spiralised courgettes has emerged.

It’s in this world that dieting remains a big business, and now Oprah’s has some big stakes in the business.

I’ve been reading my way through the long list of food histories recently, and this article about strawberries caught my eye. It’s always a bit startling to see how much science is involved in growing and transporting just the right fruit.

Lastly, this article was a beautiful view of how daily acts of love are enacted in food:

There are so many different ways to show love through food — you can cook for someone, you can feed them.

Or you can just make a little room at the table for what they love to eat.

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CFP: Food as a cultural heritage: challenges, processes and perspectives

A call for papers for an annual conference in France that may be of interest to our readers:

IEHCA logo

Food as a cultural heritage: challenges, processes and perspectives

Conference organised by the European Institute for the History and Cultures of Food (IEHCA, Tours, France)

15-16 November 2018 – Tours (France)

For several years now, many scientists have taken an interest in the relationship between food and heritage: from historians to anthropologists, sociologists to geographers, experts in the field of tourism science, and more. This interest has spawned a host of new publications, and with it a number of mono-disciplinary case studies.

There is a need to review these actions and this work. With the European Council and Parliament deciding that 2018 will be “European Cultural Heritage Year”, there is now a drive to “raise awareness of European history and values and to strengthen a sense of European identity”, while also “drawing attention to the opportunities offered by our cultural heritage, but also to the challenges it faces”. Viewing food in all its aspects as a cultural heritage clearly follows from the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. This includes “the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge, skills – as well as the instruments, objects, artefacts and cultural spaces associated therewith – that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognise as part of their cultural heritage. This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and their history, and provides them with a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity”. The terms of this definition inspired the European Institute for the History and Cultures of Food to initiate and carry through the Repas gastronomique des Français (Gastronomic meal of the French) nomination project. Furthermore, UNESCO has added 14 “food” elements to the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity and many other applications are being prepared. The time has come for a comprehensive and coordinated process of reflection.

Lines of enquiry

The first objective of the conference will be to advocate a multidisciplinary approach to the various aspects covered by food heritage. The second innovative trajectory will be to take a European and international standpoint, with a particular reference to countries that have successfully added food elements to the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Finally, we will focus particular attention on the differing time frames, including those that are more long-term in nature.

This comprehensive approach will first focus on challenges: providing a precise definition of concepts such as intangible and food heritage, identifying the scientific and professional communities concerned by these concepts, while also taking the fragile nature of food heritage into account.

Understanding processes is key, in terms of developing the concept of intangible heritage or the historic development of food heritage (compared to concepts such as terroir), and preparing applications for inclusion on UNESCO’s Representative List. The national inventories are essential tools in this regard.

And finally, perspectives consider the fact that, as with any other intangible cultural heritage, food heritage is covered by safeguarding measures. The establishment of a global network of intangible cultural heritage food elements can, clearly, provide robust support for any collective action. We intend to lay the foundations for this network with the 2018 symposium.

Topics (non-exhaustive)

  • Typicality, in terms of the link between the product (and the know-how it takes to produce and transform it) and its place of origin, is a value whose characteristics change based on place and time. Typicality and tradition both contribute to shaping the concept of heritage. Here, too, recent case studies are available.
  • It is now impossible to discuss the notion of food heritage without due consideration of the UNESCO Convention and the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in Need of Urgent Safeguarding. Strictly speaking, the Urgent Safeguarding List still contains neither food nor gastronomic elements. Nevertheless, food does play a significant role in, for example, the Yaokwa ritual of the Enawene Nawe people of Brazil (2011), and Guatemala’s Nan Pa’ch ceremony (2013). While studies have already been published, this phenomenon calls for more in-depth research.
  • The notion of food heritage (or culinary, or gastronomic) is a recent development, but its roots stretch back in time. A preliminary work on the French case was published recently, and The French Culinary Model: dissemination, adaption, transformation and opposition worldwide (17th–21st centuries) was chosen as the topic of the IEHCA’s 2014 Conference. But here again, much remains to be done, particularly in a global and comparative sense.
  • Where heritage exists, there is also a need to understand, safeguard and transfer this heritage. This requirement is explicit in the UNESCO Convention, but its roots can be traced as far back as the Middle Ages. Such a need explains both the existence of inventories and political action taken by public authorities at a national, regional and local level.
  • Food heritage appreciation and interpretation was also the subject of an innovative museological and museographical project using virtual technologies. However, areas remain to be explored, and the use of certain techniques has often generated discrepancies or impossibilities that are yet to be identified to improve public information.
  • The process of heritage designation loads the standard product (and its cuisine) with added values derived from history and mythology; mythology often merges with history, to the point at which it acts as a substitute. The fact that sociologists have developed the expression “nostalgia marketing”, which refers to these aspects, is no coincidence; the consumer is reassured, and recognises a reminder of “the good old days” in the product, a guarantee of quality. There is also a clear economic aspect inherent in this example.

Submission guidelines

If you would like to present a paper at this conference, please send a proposal including an abstract and a CV (1 page maximum, in total) in French or English to be submitted to loic.bienassis@iehca.eu by 15 December 2017.

L’alimentation comme patrimoine culturel : enjeux, processus et perspectives

Colloque organisé par l’Institut Européen d’Histoire et des Cultures de l’Alimentation (IEHCA, Tours, France)

15-16 novembre 2018 – Tours (France)

Depuis quelques années, les relations entre nourriture et patrimoine ont suscité l’intérêt de nombreux scientifiques : des historiens aux anthropologues, des sociologues aux géographes jusqu’aux experts des sciences du tourisme, etc. En témoignent de multiples publications récentes, qui présentent autant d’études de cas mono-disciplinaires.

Un bilan de ces actions et des travaux effectués s’impose. Le Conseil et le Parlement européen ayant décidé que 2018 serait l’« Année européenne du patrimoine culturel », l’initiative a été lancée de « sensibiliser à l’histoire et aux valeurs européennes et à renforcer un sentiment d’identité européenne » tout en attirant « l’attention sur les possibilités offertes par notre patrimoine culturel, mais également sur les défis auxquels il est confronté ». Considérer l’alimentation et tous ses aspects en tant que patrimoine culturel découle évidemment de la Convention UNESCO pour la sauvegarde du patrimoine culturel immatériel, qui, rappelons-le, inclut « les pratiques, représentations, expressions, connaissances et savoir-faire – ainsi que les instruments, objets, artefacts et espaces culturels qui leur sont associés – que les communautés, les groupes et, le cas échéant, les individus reconnaissent comme faisant partie de leur patrimoine culturel. Ce patrimoine culturel immatériel, transmis de génération en génération, est recréé en permanence par les communautés et groupes en fonction de leur milieu, de leur interaction avec la nature et de leur histoire, et leur procure un sentiment d’identité et de continuité, contribuant ainsi à promouvoir le respect de la diversité culturelle et la créativité humaine ». Ce sont les termes mêmes de cette définition qui avaient conduit l’Institut Européen d’Histoire et des Cultures de l’Alimentation à initier et à mener à bien le projet d’inscription du Repas gastronomique des Français. Outre celui-ci, quatorze éléments « alimentaires » ont été classés par l’UNESCO dans la liste représentative du patrimoine culturel immatériel de l’humanité et de nombreux autres dossiers sont en préparation. Le temps est venu d’une réflexion globale et coordonnée.

Orientations

Le premier objectif du colloque sera de promouvoir une approche multidisciplinaire des différents aspects que recouvre le patrimoine alimentaire. Sa seconde originalité sera d’adopter une perspective européenne et internationale en s’appuyant notamment sur les pays qui ont fait inscrire des éléments alimentaires au patrimoine culturel immatériel de l’humanité. Enfin on sera particulièrement attentif aux différentes échelles temporelles, y compris la longue durée.

Cette approche globale abordera d’abord la question des enjeux, qui suppose de définir précisément des notions comme patrimoine immatériel ou alimentaire, de délimiter les communautés scientifiques et professionnelles concernées par ces notions, sans oublier la prise en compte de la fragilité des patrimoines alimentaires.

La compréhension des processus est cruciale, que ce soit la construction de la notion de patrimoine immatériel ou bien la construction historique du patrimoine alimentaire (par rapport à des notions comme celle de terroir) ou encore l’élaboration des dossiers présentés pour l’inscription sur la liste représentative de l’UNESCO. De ce point de vue, l’instrument représenté par les inventaires nationaux se révèle essentiel.

Enfin les perspectives intègrent le fait que le patrimoine alimentaire, comme tout le patrimoine culturel immatériel en général, fait l’objet de mesures de sauvegarde. La mise en place d’un réseau mondial des éléments alimentaires du patrimoine culturel immatériel peut sans aucun doute être un puissant appui à une action collective : le colloque de 2018 entend en être la première pierre.

Thématiques (non exhaustives)

  • La typicité, en tant que lien entre le produit (et le savoir-faire qui le réalise et le transforme) et son lieu d’origine, est une valeur dont les caractéristiques changent selon le lieu et le temps. Typicité et tradition participent ensemble à la construction du concept de patrimoine. Dans ce cas, aussi, nous disposons d’études de cas récentes.
  • Il est maintenant impossible d’aborder l’idée du patrimoine alimentaire sans prendre en considération la convention UNESCO et la liste des éléments du patrimoine culturel immatériel de l’humanité qui nécessitent une sauvegarde urgente. Dans cette dernière, on ne trouve pas encore d’éléments alimentaires ou gastronomiques stricto sensu. Cependant, la nourriture occupe une place importante, par exemple, dans le rituel appelé Yaokwa, du peuple brésilien Enawene Nawe (2011) et dans la cérémonie de la Nan Pa’ch du Guatemala (2013). Des études ont déjà été publiées mais ce phénomène demande un approfondissement des enquêtes.
  • L’idée du patrimoine alimentaire (ou culinaire, ou gastronomique) est le résultat d’une construction récente, mais ses origines se situent dans l’histoire. Des travaux existent mais là aussi il reste beaucoup à faire, notamment dans une démarche globale et comparative.
  • S’il y a patrimoine, il y a aussi nécessité de le connaître, de le sauvegarder et de le transmettre. Cette nécessité est explicite dans la Convention UNESCO, mais elle plonge ses racines dans un passé qu’on peut faire remonter bien en arrière, parfois jusqu’au Moyen Âge. Une telle nécessité est à l’origine des inventaires d’un côté, et d’un autre côté des mesures politiques prises par les pouvoirs publics à l’échelle nationale, régionale ou locale. Les inventaires eux-mêmes dépendent des implications culturelles et économiques véhiculées par le patrimoine et souvent présentes aussi dans le développement de son inventorisation.
  • La médiation du patrimoine alimentaire a également fait l’objet d’un travail novateur en matière de muséologie et de muséographie, grâce à l’apport des technologies virtuelles. Mais tout n’a pas été encore exploré, et l’emploi de certaines techniques a pu parfois générer des contradictions ou encore des impossibilités qu’il reste à identifier pour améliorer l’information des publics.
  • Le processus de patrimonialisation charge le produit typique (et sa cuisine aussi) de valeurs ajoutées qui proviennent de l’histoire et de la mythologie ; la mythologie se mêle souvent à l’histoire, jusqu’au point de s’y substituer. Ce n’est pas un hasard si les sociologues ont créé l’expression de « Nostalgia marketing », qui renvoie à ces aspects ; il s’agit de rassurer le consommateur, qui reconnaît dans le produit l’évocation du « bon vieux temps », garantie de qualité. L’aspect économique est évident en ce cas aussi.

Conditions de soumission

Si vous souhaitez présenter une communication à ce colloque, merci d’envoyer une proposition comprenant un argumentaire et un CV (au total 1 page maximum), en français ou en anglais, auprès de Loïc Bienassis loic.bienassis@iehca.eu avant le 15 décembre 2017.

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Ce colloque est organisé par l’Institut Européen d’Histoire de l’Alimentation (IEHCA, Tours) qui a porté la candidature du « Repas gastronomique des Français » au patrimoine culturel immatériel de l’humanité établi par l’UNESCO.

The conference is being organised by the European Institute for the History and Cultures of Food (IEHCA, Tours), which supported the nomination of the ‘Gastronomic meal of the French’ for inscription on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, established by UNESCO.

En partenariat avec / in partnership with

L’Association France PCI

Le Ministère de la Culture

La Mission Française des Patrimoines et des Cultures Alimentaires

Le Réseau des Cités de la Gastronomie

L’Université de Tours

Comité de Pilotage (provisoire) / Steering committee (provisional)

Loïc Bienassis (Chargé de mission scientifique, Institut Européen d’Histoire et des Cultures de l’Alimentation, Tours)

Francis Chevrier (Directeur de l’Institut Européen d’Histoire et des Cultures de l’Alimentation, Tours)

Denis Feignier (Inspecteur général de l’agriculture, ministère de l’Agriculture et de l’Alimentation)

Bruno Laurioux (Professeur d’histoire du Moyen Âge et de l’alimentation, Université de Tours)

Pascal Liévaux (Chef du département du pilotage de la recherche et de la politique scientifique, ministère de la Culture)

Jean-Robert Pitte (Professeur émérite de géographie, Université Paris-Sorbonne)

Françoise Sabban (Directrice d’études, anthropologie, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris)

Laurent Stéfanini (Ambassadeur, Délégué permanent de la France auprès de l’UNESCO)

Comité scientifique (provisoire) / Scientific committee (provisional)

Chiara Bortolotto (Chercheuse associée au laboratoire d’anthropologie et d’histoire de l’institution de la culture (LAHIC), Paris)

Antonella Campanini (Enseignante/chercheuse en histoire médiévale, University of Gastronomic Sciences, Pollenzo, Italie)

Allen J. Grieco (Chercheur associé, Villa I Tatti, The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies, Florence, Italie)

Jean-Robert Pitte (Professeur émérite de géographie, Université Paris-Sorbonne)

Françoise Sabban (Directrice d’études, anthropologie, É0cole des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris)

Sylvie Sagnes (Chargée de recherche, CNRS, Institut interdisciplinaire d’anthropologie du contemporain, Paris)

 

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Filed under anthropology, CFP, Food Studies, heritage