Monday, January 30, 2012



Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies, University of Toronto

Please join us for the 2012 Annual Conference of the Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies, University of Toronto

Thursday October 4 - Sunday, October 7, 2012

Expressions of Interest due: Feb. 10

Abstracts due: Mar. 16

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This conference seeks to address questions surrounding the dynamics of the food ‘we’ eat, the ways in which ‘we’ eat, the meaning ‘we’ give to eating, and the effect of eating in a transnational world. Recognizing that culinary culture is central to diasporic identifications, the focus is on the place of food in the enduring habits, rituals, and everyday practices that are collectively used to produce and sustain a shared senses of cultural identity. Yet even as it does this work, food and the practices of production, preparation and consumption that revolve around it, cannot help but be drawn into wider cultures and cultural politics of consumption increasingly grounded in the pursuit of qualities of difference, acts of distinction and questions of justice. This focus on food, cooking, and eating in diaspora and its role in connecting and changing peoples, places, tastes, and sensibilities around the world yields insight not only to substances that people consider essential to the maintenance of identity, but to the production of new cultural political formations in a transnational world and to the role of cultural (re)production in the expansion of consumption under contemporary capitalism. A focus on food also reveals the dynamic role of historical pathways in understanding cultural formations as they have existed through time, and in positioning the present as a moment in a continuing process of structured mobility that directs the movement of people, what they eat, and how they understand themselves and the world around them. It also yields insight into the multiple places and ways in which food assumes value and how that value is often reliant upon the continued reproduction of ties that bind people, place, and practice across space and time. A great deal of academic work explores this interplay of food, practice, identity and subject formation, much of it bound together by a commitment that through a fuller understanding of those relations, we better understand ourselves, our pasts, and the complexities of the spaces and lives we inhabit and enact in a transnational world. This conference seeks to enhance that understanding.

The conference website will be available soon, with more information, registration, and online submission of abstracts. For now, to help with advance planning we would be grateful if you would submit expressions of interest.

Submitting an Expression of Interest:
We welcome contributions from scholars, activists, artists, advocates, government staff and food and agriculture practitioners and expect the meeting to have wide appeal across the Humanities and Social Sciences. Suggestions for papers, panel proposals, roundtables, posters and workshops should speak directly to the theme of the conference and can align with, but are not limited to, the examples of potential panels provided below.

To help us with advance planning, please submit expressions of interest by Feb. 10 2012. For papers and posters this should be the title of an intended paper or poster. For panel, roundtable or workshop proposals, this should include a title and brief (two sentence) description of the session. Panels should consist of 4 papers. In your expression of interest, please include your title, the name of your college, university or organization,address and contact details and your areas of research, writing or practice.

Please address your expressions of interest to Rebecca O’Neill - with the subject line “Food Conference”

For more information on the Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies at the University of Toronto, please see:

Possible Topics and Areas of Interest:
• The Transnational Kitchen: the role of food ‘professionals’ as transnational agents in shaping new foods, sourcing new ingredients, identifying and incorporating new ingredients and trends in preparation 

• The Syncretic Pot: Cooking in Transnational Spaces. The dynamics of foodpreparation in transnational spaces and the place of cooking in negotiating shared senses of diasporic identity.

• Transnational Food Spaces: A consideration of the kitchen, the dining room, the grocery store, the garden, the café, the restaurant, the school and the workplace as sites of transculturation, spaces in which disparate representations of ‘the other’ (and ‘other foods’) are encountered, and the reconfigurations of food, eating and identity that result from these encounters.

• The Diasporic Garden: explorations of the various modes and mechanisms of production and distribution required to supply the products integral to the social and commercial production of foodstuffs for diasporic communities; including the often-invisible spaces of backyard gardens, community farms, ethnic markets, etc.

• Am I What I Eat? Transnational Flows, Food and Constructs of Authenticity: Questioning the role of authenticity in sanctioning foodstuffs and how constructs and conceptions of ‘the authentic self’ change as people strive (and often fail) to reproduce ‘authentic’ cuisines.

• Affective Bodies at the Transnational Table: Considerations of the relations between the senses, affect, food, manners and etiquette and the disciplining effect of eating in embodying and performing the qualities integral to diasporic identifications.

• Culinary Foodways: Charting the adaptation, substitution, and indigenization of ingredients, foodstuffs, and methods of preparation across time and space.

• Food Memories: Considering the work performed by food in the reproduction of sociality, myth and ritual and practice that are core to maintaining the boundaries of diasporic communities and constructs of ‘home’, ‘away’, and ‘return’.

• The Food Dialogues: Exploration of the various channels (e. g, personal correspondence, popular culture, media, professional associations, social movements) through which the transformation of diet becomes a spatially iterative process.

• Enclave Eating and Cosmo-Multiculturalism: questions of the degree to which the ready availability of diasporic foodstuffs encourages or permits a ‘lazy’ engagement with multi-culturalism in which eating ‘the foreign’ or ‘the exotic’ is focused on the production of a distinctive self and displaces other more substantive or productive forms of engagement with difference.

• Fixing Food –In what ways are diasporic foods essentialized and does the necessity of maintaining "exotic" or “authentic” foodscapes produce a distinct diasporic burden, acting to fix migrant culinary cultures - with what outcomes and effects for foods and the creativity of their makers?

• A Doner Kebab with ‘the Works’ - identifying why and through what historical processes food becomes a mediator of of ethnic identities produced in diasporic contexts.

• Where’s Little India? – a consideration of the role of food in the development of distinct "ethnic quarters”, the historical conditions in which such enclaves are produced and with what consequences for peoples working and living in those enclaves?

Advisory Committee
Lauren Baker (Toronto Food Policy Council)
Simone Cinotto, (UNISG, Pollenzo, Italy)
Ian Cook (Geography, Exeter)
Michaeline Crichlow (Sociology, Duke)
Harriet Friedmann (Geography, Toronto)
Rick Halpern (History, Toronto)
Josee Johnston (Sociology Toronto)
Minelle Mahtani (Geography and Program in Journalism, Toronto)
Sidney Mintz (Anthropology, Johns Hopkins)
Jeffrey Pilcher (History, Minnesota)
Krishnendu Ray (Food Studies, NYU)
Eleanor Sterling (Director, Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation, American Museum of Natural History; Columbia University)
Penny Van Esterik (Anthropology, York)
Rick Wilk (Anthropology, Indiana)
Local Arrangements and Organizing Committee (University of Toronto)
Ken MacDonald (Chair) (Geography, CDTS)
Antonela Arhin ( CDTS)
Dan Bender (History)
Ben Liu (Centre for Community Partnerships; Geography)
Rebecca O’Neill (History)
Kevin O’Neill (Religious Studies; CDTS)
Ato Quayson (English; CDTS)
Anna Shternshis (Germanic Languages; Jewish Studies; CDTS)
Nick Terpstra (History; CDTS)

Thursday, January 12, 2012


Food and the City Conference

Food and the City Conference
February 24 – 25, 2012
Boston University
Photonics Center, Room 906

Food and the City, an initiative of Boston University’s History Department, is pleased to announce a two-day conference dedicated to a historical discussion about the relationship between food and cities. The event will encourage multi-disciplinary, global perspectives and explore how the history of feeding cities could inform the design and practices of urban food systems in the future.


foodies in exile: paintings by bryce vinokurov

foodies in exile: paintings by bryce vinokurov

artist statement:

For the past six years I have lived in Davis, California, a small town in Northern California, largely surrounded by agricultural fields. After ten years of living in Boston Massachusetts, my move left me feeling in exile from the urban city life I had become accustomed to. However, the inspiration of the Northern California landscape and the emergent national fixation with the sustainable food industry and culture quickly became an inspiration. As a result my largely abstract work has been populated with figures and landscapes. The subject of the work revolves a group of foodies who are not set in a specific time or space. These satirical pieces include groups of individuals on bikes, around grills, donning chef hats or handling other accessories, but with other comforts of the modern world unspecified. I enjoy the idea of these foodies exiled to an idyllic place-cooking on grills, fighting over recipes and arguing over who is the best chef. These characters battle each other with pizza peals and chef’s knives. They hold petty grudges over recipes and fight over truffle pigs. They wage war over food poisoning and have been exiled to a land that looks like Umbria, Tuscany or Napa. The foodies are nomads with grills banished to a life of locavore eating. The inspiration for the landscape these foodies in exile often find themselves in, and the composition of these groups are heavily influenced by the painters Giotto, Piero della Francesca, and Lorenzetti. For the last 4 years I have been going to Italy to teach in the summer, and the Umbrian and Tuscan landscapes and light pervade the work. The body of work includes large and small oil paintings, collages, linocuts, and intaglio etchings.

Friday, January 06, 2012


New Book: Taking food public : redefining foodways in a changing world

Taking food public : redefining foodways in a changing world / edited by Psyche Williams Forson, Carole Counihan.
Published New York : Routledge, 2012.
Description xiv, 635 p. : ill. ; 26 cm.
Record format BK Book
BI Books with illustrations
Check Availability All items
Call no. Shields Library GT2850 .T326 2012 In process

Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index.
Contents Taking food public / Psyche Williams-Forson and Carole Counihan -- Food industrialisation and food power: implications for food governance / Tim Lang -- Women and food chains: the gendered politics of food / Patricia Allen and Carolyn Sachs -- Can we sustain sustainable agriculture? Learning from small-scale producer-suppliers in Canada and the UK / Larch Maxey -- Things became scarce: food availability and accessibility in Santiago de Cuba then and now / Hanna Garth -- Capitalism and its discontents: back-to-the-lander and freegan foodways in rural Oregon / Joan Gross -- Cultural geographies in practice. The south central farm: dilemmas in practicing the public / Laura Lawson -- Charlas culinarias: Mexican women speak from their public kitchens / Meredeith E. Abarca -- Inequality in obesigenic environments: fast food density in New York City / Naa Oyo A. Kwate, Chun-Yip Yau, Ji-Meng Loh, and Donya Williams --
Physical disabilities and food access among limited resource households / Caroline B. Webber, Jeffery Sobal, and Jaime S. Dollahite -- Other women cooked for my husband: negotiating gender, food, and identities in an African American/Ghanian household / Pysche Williams-Forson -- Going beyond the normative White "post-racial" Vegan epistemology / A. Breeze Harper -- Purity, soul food, and Sunni Islam: explorations at the intersection of consumption and resistance / Carolyn Rouse and Janet Hoskins -- Cleaning from gluttony: an Australian youth subculture confronts the ethics of waste / Ferne Edwards and David Mercer -- "If they only knew": color blindness and universalism in California alternative food institutions / Julie Guthman -- Feeding desire: food, domesticity, and challenges to hetero-patriarchy / Anita Mannur -- Towards queering food studies: foodways, heteronormativity, and hungry women in Chicana lesbian writing / Julia C. Ehrhardt --
Metrosexuality can stuff it: beef consumption as (heteromasculine) fortification / C. Wesley Buerkle -- "Please pass the chicken tits": rethinking men and cooking at an urban firehouse / Jonathan Deutsch -- The magic metabolisms of competitive eating / Adrienne Rose Johnson -- Vintage breast milk: exploring the discursive limits of feminine fluids / Penny Van Esterik -- Do the hands that feed us hold us back? Implications of assisted eating / G. Denise Lance -- Will tweet for food: microblogging mobile food trucks--online, offline, and in line / Alison Caldwell -- Visualizing 21st-century foodscapes: using photographs and new media in food studies / Melissa L. Salazar --

Tuesday, January 03, 2012


CFP: Food, Migration, and Movement

Call for Submissions: Food, Migration, and Movement

Food is a common and constant variable among us; everyone must eat. Vandal
is looking for fiction, non-fiction, poetry, essays, photographs,
interviews and visual art that engages the theme: food, migration, and

We interpret this call as broadly as possible, to include all topics that
deal with food/foodways, and migration or political movement(s). The
movement of food(s) and people(s) has always intimately connected politics,
culture, and identity, marking ‘us’ and ‘them’. Food migrations are surely
among the most globally transformative moments in recorded history.
Christopher Columbus sailed in search of spices, and sugar was inextricable
in the trade triangle that brought so many enslaved Africans to the “New
World.” Sugar, coffee and cocoa remain among the most traded commodities
worldwide. As food often reflects public policy’s focus, food also becomes
the vehicle through which we voice our politics. These expressions can be
witnessed in government corn subsidies, hunger strikes, the establishment
of local community farms and protests on every continent resulting from
rising food prices within the last year. Our options or lack of options in
food ultimately effect health and culture. To engage food is to engage the
most crucial aspects of all societies.

Please submit to: *Deadline: February 1,

Vandal is a new literary/art journal for transformative social change
founded in 2009 in College Station, Texas and associated with Texas A&M. It
publishes scholarly and artistic fiction, non-fiction, art and literature.
For more information see:

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