Magazine article Phi Kappa Phi Forum

A Note from the Editor

Magazine article Phi Kappa Phi Forum

A Note from the Editor

Article excerpt


The biggest problem we have had with this issue is that we cannot read it without getting hungry. The number of yeast products in our offices has risen steadily, and the candy basket in our reception area (for visitors, of course) has been refilled several times as we have read and edited these articles. In short, we have had a lovely time with this issue, in spite of the extra pounds that it has inspired.

The idea for the issue actually started out as a sort of inside joke. We often talked about doing an issue on food because we decided that part of our research would be to travel to distant places to sample exotic cuisines -- as if that would actually happen! But the idea persisted, and the more we thought of it, the more we warmed to the possibility. After all, what is more basic to continued existence than food? Also, doing something on food and culture seemed somehow so life-affirming, especially after issues on crime and terrorism. So we hope that you enjoy these essays as much as we did, and please do not blame us if your stomach begins to rumble as you read.

Rebecca Sharpless opens the issue with a discussion of food, food preparation, and gender in the South. Professor Sharpless looks at rural versus urban cooking, cooking as a livelihood, and asks the question of whether in the increasingly urban and cosmopolitan South, southern cooking is dying. For all our sakes, we hope not.

Next, Deborah Madison explores the burgeoning phenomenon of farmers' markets. Once uncommon, in the past few years such markets have opened all over the country. What they offer is twofold. To most consumers, they offer the chance to buy fresh food directly from the people who produced it -- a rare experience in this supermarket age. To the farmers, they offer extra income that might just spell the difference between survival and oblivion. Such markets thus are winning propositions for all.

Corrie Norman then tells us how her students explored religion by learning about the foodways of a religion. She chose food as a way to gain insight because she wanted her students at Converse College (a women's college) to gain some insight into the woman's role in religions in which the contributions of women are often obscured because the clerics are usually men. …

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