Food and Power


ISBN-10 1-909248-70-3

ISBN-13 978-1-909248-70-0

Published July 2020

400 pages; 246×174 mm; paperback; b&w illustrations



Food and Power

Proceedings of the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery 2019

Food & Power (Oxford Symposium 2019) was a vivacious gathering, and the debates were heated. The Jane Grigson lecture came from Joanna Blythman, on the differences between the natural, homely world, and that of commerce, resulting in food ‘pyramids’, for example how a traditional diet of fish and seal fat, the Innuit diet, can be seen to be the top of a pyramid shape, with the carbohydrates and fatty processed foods  they sadly consume now forming the wide base.

From Brexit food security to hunger strikes, feminist restaurants in 1970s Chicago, to lower class diners in Belle Époque France, the symposium formed both opinions and new impressions.



 Mark McWilliams

Plenary Papers


Len Fisher, Janet Clarkson, and Elisabeth Luard

The Power of Enjoyment in the Face of Industrialized Food

Joanna Blythman


Serving Up A Slice of Africa: Reading Empire Adventure Stories as Textual Blancmanges of National Identity, Power, and Race

Siobhan Dooley

A Tale of Two Cities: Paris, London, and the Political Power of Food

Carolyn Steel

Symposium Papers

Forging the Future, Making Peace with the Past: The Case of Ammachi Canteens in Sri Lanka

Vidya Balachander

Shooting them Softly:  Photographing Lower-Class Eaters in Belle Époque Paris

Janet Beizer

Gastrodiplomacy and the UK Diplomatic Network

Paul Brummell

Sushi, Sake, and Women

Voltaire Cang

Food as Power in the Letters of Isabella d’Este

Allison Fisher

Food Production, Consumption, and Resistance by Japanese Americans Incarcerated by the United States Government During World War II

Paula I. Fujiwara

The Muckamuck: Restaurants, Labour, and the Power of Representation

Sasha Gora

Starving for Rights: Hunger Strikes as Weapons of Resistance inside Farms and Prisons in the United States

Melissa Gouge and Jennifer Hostetter

Eating French, Being French: Gastronomy and National Identity in Contemporary France

Jennifer Holm

Marxist Analysis, in My Food Technology? Fuzzy Legibility, Flavour Connections, and the Recent Dialectical Emergence of Post-Modernity in Cuisine

Arielle Johnson

Counter Narratives: American and Canadian Feminist Restaurants from 1972 to the Present

Alex D. Ketchum

Weaponizing Food: Communism, the Democratic Transition, and the Transformation of Taste

Dorota Koczanowicz and Leszek Koczanowicz

Sugar and Show: Power, Conspicuous Display, and Sweet Banquets during Henri III’s 1574 Visit to Venice

Michael Krondl

Making Yakiniku Japanese: Erasing the Korean Contribution from Japan’s Food Culture

Christopher Laurent

The Community Cookbook as a Vehicle of Women’s Empowerment in Nineteenth- and Early Twentieth-Century America

Don Lindgren

The Power of Eating Together, or the Story of Why Banquets Were the Core of Marriage in the Past

Andrea Maraschi

Not in One Place: Parenteral Nutrition and Time-Space Compression

Jacob A. Matthews

Encounters of Food and Power in the Australian Colonial Contact Zone

Frieda Moran

Meat and Power in Communist Romania

Simona Moti

Going Hungry in the Magdalene laundries, 1922-1996

Guilia Nicolini and Alice Mulhearn-Williams

Cooking in Calais: Resistance to the Food Desert in Northern France

Féilim Ó Cuireáin

Everything but the Kitchen Syndicate: How Parisian Cuisinières Cleaned up their Reputation by Tapping into Social Stereotypes

Samantha Presnal

Sustainable Gastronomy: Power and Energy Use in Food

Christian Reynolds

Mom vs. the FDA: How One Woman Got the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to Correct Their Evaluation of the Mid-Atlantic Golden Tilefish

Charity Robey

Perceptions of Food and Italy’s Colonization of Libya, 1911-1912

Or Rosenboim

‘To Make the Whole World Homelike’: Gender and Power in the Food Revolution

Laura Shapiro

True Bread, Pizza Napoletana, and Wedding Cakes: The Changing Ways Legal Power Has Shaped Bakers’ Lives

Richard Shepro

I’ll Tell You How to Cook to Tell You Who I Am: The Culinary Identity Constructions of the Eaton Sisters

Koby Song-Nichols

Lebanese Sea Power: Food and the Phoenicians

David Sutton

Cannibalism and Power: Resituating the Narratives of Post-Soviet Foodways Through Vladimir Sorokin’s Feast

Svetlana Tcareva

The Shared Power of Hunger Artists and the Viennese Actionists

Carolyn Tillie

Empire of Wheat: Bread, Power, and Colonialism in the French Empire (1890-1940)

Nicholas Tošaj

The Power of Laws and Lies in the Italian Fascist Kitchen

Anne Urbancic

Subsistence Depression in Alaska: Who Gets Paid?

Nina Vizcarrondo