September 09th 2019

Foodways and Identity: Conference on Food and Drink Traditions


This international academic conference explores how traditions involving food and drink help shape and maintain cultural identity across the globe.


Everyone eats, yet cultures around the world have developed strikingly different traditions surrounding food and drinks, ranging from customs concerning the slaughtering of animals to food preparation, snacks, meals, and toasts. Foodways may be localised, but they have also long been globalised, with trading routes transporting both staple and luxury ingredients and produce between far-flung destinations: Bronze Age salt roads, ancient intercontinental spice routes, the Classical Mediterranean’s wine and garum trades, and the introduction of New World produce into Old World kitchens all evidence the historical significance of food and drink for economies and societies.


Eating and drinking customs continue to travel, intermingle, and influence one another to this day through the increased ease with which peoples and their foods and drinks can be transported around the world. At the same time, however, people are embracing elements of their traditional (or purportedly traditional) foodways as a means of reinforcing and sustaining cultural identities. In multicultural cities, this is true for both immigrant and native populations. It is thus that, for example, the immigration-driven flourishing of foreign foodways in Copenhagen has occurred alongside revitalised or possibly reinvented traditions of ultra-localism, most notably in the form of the so-called ‘New Nordic’ cuisine.


This conference will consider the ways in which food and drink traditions interact with one another and with the cultures among which they occur. Special emphasis will be placed on the role played by foodways in the maintenance and changing of identity."

Final deadline for registration is August 31 2019.

For more information, visit the conference website.