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Hesitant hands on changing tables: Negotiating dining patterns in diaspora food culture transfer


Flitsch, Mareile (2011). Hesitant hands on changing tables: Negotiating dining patterns in diaspora food culture transfer. Asiatische Studien / Études Asiatiques, 65(4):969-984.

Abstract

Food culture and dining patterns can, in any society, be read with regard to the history of food, social structures, economic choices, culinary techniques, food knowledge and even identities, habits and perception of comfortableness of its members and time. How then do migrants and diaspora communities translate the culinary practice into which they were socialized in their home communities into their new lifestyles and ways of eating? This article starts from the idea that autonomy over food is a major issue for migrants and their integration into new contexts. It is argued that through looking at the materially and culturally shaped body, at bodily practices of dining as well as at their becoming entangled in a new social and technical space, the preservation andlor transformation of habits may be studied and literally read as expressions of migrants' search for new identities and orientation. Food knowledge and culinary practice is revealed as the repertoire of migrants in their search of solutions for problems at different levels. In cases of asylum seeking and refuge, autonomy over food is a particularly sensitive issue which has not yet found much attention in anthropology of food nor in diaspora research.

Food culture and dining patterns can, in any society, be read with regard to the history of food, social structures, economic choices, culinary techniques, food knowledge and even identities, habits and perception of comfortableness of its members and time. How then do migrants and diaspora communities translate the culinary practice into which they were socialized in their home communities into their new lifestyles and ways of eating? This article starts from the idea that autonomy over food is a major issue for migrants and their integration into new contexts. It is argued that through looking at the materially and culturally shaped body, at bodily practices of dining as well as at their becoming entangled in a new social and technical space, the preservation andlor transformation of habits may be studied and literally read as expressions of migrants' search for new identities and orientation. Food knowledge and culinary practice is revealed as the repertoire of migrants in their search of solutions for problems at different levels. In cases of asylum seeking and refuge, autonomy over food is a particularly sensitive issue which has not yet found much attention in anthropology of food nor in diaspora research.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:790 Sports, games & entertainment
390 Customs, etiquette & folklore
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
Language:English
Date:April 2011
Deposited On:22 Feb 2012 09:10
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:26
Publisher:Schweizerische Asiengesellschaft / Verlag Peter Lang
ISSN:0004-4717
Related URLs:http://www.peterlang.com/index.cfm?event=cmp.ccc.seitenstruktur.detailseiten&seitentyp=subscription&pk=1437&cid=836&concordeid=80000 (Publisher)
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-56036

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