" . . . provides valuable information for the specialist in American studies, and for the anthropologist or folklorist focusing on food use, and may also be of interest to the general reading audience. With such a wide appeal, the book may not only document the American romance with ethnic foods, but may contribute to it as well."
—Joanne Wagner, Anthropological Quarterly
How do customs surrounding the preparation and consumption of food define minorities within a population? The question receives fascinating and multifaceted answers in this book, which considers a smorgasbord of dishes that sustain group identity and often help to bridge inter-group barriers.
The essays explore the symbolic meaning of shared foodways in interpreting inter- and intra-group behavior, with attention to theoretical problems and the implications of foodways research for public policy. Topics receiving rewarding analysis in this volume include food festivals, modes of food preparation, meal cycles, seasonal celebrations, nutrition education, and the government's inattention to ethnic customs in forumlating its food policies.