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Global Jewish Foodways: A History

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Wednesday, Apr 17, 2019
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM EDT
SBUS 140Map Location

The MSU History Department, Jewish Studies, Nutrition and Food Studies, and the MSU Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights Education Project are delighted to host Dr. Hasia R. Diner (New York University) and Dr. Simone Cinotto (University of Gastronomic Sciences, Italy), for a moderated discussion about their new book Global Jewish Foodways: A History (University of Nebraska Press).

The history of the Jewish people has been a history of migration. Although Jews invariably brought with them their traditional ideas about food during these migrations, just as invariably they engaged with the foods they encountered in their new environments. Their culinary habits changed as a result of both these migrations and the new political and social realities they encountered. The stories in this volume examine the sometimes bewildering kaleidoscope of food experiences generated by new social contacts, trade, political revolutions, wars, and migrations, both voluntary and compelled.

This panoramic history of Jewish food highlights its breadth and depth on a global scale from Renaissance Italy to the post–World War II era in Israel, Argentina, and the United States and critically examines the impact of food on Jewish lives and on the complex set of laws, practices, and procedures that constitutes the Jewish dietary system and regulates what can be eaten, when, how, and with whom. Global Jewish Foodways offers a fresh perspective on how historical changes through migration, settlement, and accommodation transformed Jewish food and customs.