Culture and Cuisine of Québec 2.0



Merci to all the wonderful producers, chefs, academics and passionate food people in Québec who made our trip fun, educational and delicious. More photos here…

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Wine and Culture: Vineyard to Glass


Wine and Culture: Vineyard to Glass (Bloomsbury Academic, 2013), the book that I co-edited with Robert C. Ulin, is now available on-line and in bookstores. Many thanks to all of our wonderful contributors and to Fulvio Silvestri for the wonderful cover images.

“This collection is a heady investigation of wine as a sociocultural and historical commodity in diverse global sites. Fifteen engaging articles show how the ethnographic study of wine penetrates beyond the bottle to reveal labor relations, power structures, market forces, and deeply held meanings about identity and place.” - Carole Counihan, author of ‘Around the Tuscan Table: Food, Family and Gender in Twentieth Century Florence’ and editor-in-chief of ‘Food and Foodways’

“This collection represents the first of its kind to focus on wine from a sociocultural perspective while bringing together current approaches to questions of identity, culture, authenticity, craft and technology, and the senses. Like terroir itself, this collection roots the taste of wine in places, in the history and emergence of new landscapes of tastes, and the changing social and environmental relations of its production, dissemination and consumption. Uncork it for yourself and see!” – David Sutton, Professor of Anthropology, Southern Illinois University, USA

“Given its global, economic, social and cultural importance, it’s astonishing that the anthropology of wine has been so neglected for so long. This splendid collection of incisive essays goes a long way towards establishing key issues in this emerging field, many of which are also relevant to contemporary anthropology in general.” –  Jeremy MacClancy, Professor of Social Anthropoology, Dept of Social Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, uk

Read more about Wine and Culture here…

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Upcoming talks


Eugénie Brazier in the kitchen at her restaurant La Mère Brazier

Sept. 22, 2013 – 10:30-11:45am – “Tools of the Trade: Experiential Studies for the Food Industry”, Programs in Food, Wine and the Arts, Boston University

Roundtable discussion on “Experiential Academics”

Oct. 22, 2013 – 12:30-1:50pm – Center for the Study of Europe, Boston University

“Cuisine des mères: Heritage, gender and the construction of culinary culture – A luncheon discussion with Rachel Black”

Oct. 29, 2013 – 6pm – Culinary Historians of Boston, Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University

“La cuisine des mères: How women made Lyon the gastronomic capital of France, 1890-1935″


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Taking Space to Grow Food and Community: Urban Agriculture and Guerrilla Gardening in Vancouver



City planners and citizens often see gardens as spaces for urban beautification projects. However, urban agriculture and growing food in cities is becoming an increasingly accepted use of public green spaces. This article examines how gardeners and the City of Vancouver negotiate space while trying to create green cities, greater awareness of food security issues, and community in urban environments. These gardens show how local discourses of health, environment, and food production are created through this process of appropriating urban spaces for horticultural activities. Based on ethnographic fieldwork, this paper explores the development of spontaneous and grassroots urban agriculture movements in Vancouver. This research was carried out from 2006 to 2008 while the city was preparing for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. At this time, Vancouverites, local officials, and Games organizers were concerned about putting on a “green” Games. As the media spotlight began to fall on Vancouver, urban agriculture became a very public demonstration of the city’s environmental awareness. This article looks at how, at a particular historic moment, grassroots gardening movements gained mainstream acceptance and played a role in constructing the city’s image as an environmentally aware urban place with a high standard of living.

Read this article in Cuizine: The Journal of Canadian Food Culture.

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Summer Research Project: Cuisine des mères lyonnaises


Who were these mères? In the early twentieth century, affluent bourgeois households in the Lyon area employed female cooks who became known for their refined cuisine. After World War I and the economic crash of 1929, most families could no longer afford to keep a cook. Finding themselves without work, some of these women opened small, family-run dining establishments, which served simple yet perfectly prepared cuisine…

Read more about my recent research trip to Lyon, France on the Gastronomy at BU blog.

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