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Grasshoppers which are used as food throughout Mexico. They are semi-domesticated, and collected from specific fields rather than forests.
Define Tuareg smiths
In the Tuareg society smiths are attached to noble families in clientship. They are also the "entertainers" and participate in ritual/economic exchanges and arrange marriages for their associated nobles.
Someone who eats locally produced food whenever possible. Many believe that this encourages small-farm ownership and increases the quality of food product available to the market.
Spirulina is an algae which is often consumed as a high-protein food supplement due to its inexpensive cost and high nutritional value.
The eating of horse. It is common practice around the world including locations such as France and Italy.
Define holy anorexia
The idea, made popular in medieval times, that fasting was a way to attain spiritual perfection though complete self-discipline.
The practice of marrying only within a specific class or social group, such as seen in the Tuareg society.
The "re-educated youths" sent into the Chinese countryside to learn the ways of the peasants during Mao's cultural revolution.
Define The Cultural Revolution/Mao Zedong.
Mao Zedong led the cultural revolution in China, effectively removing all elements of the society he deemed "bourgeois". This involved sending academics into the countryside to learn the ways of the peasants, and silencing all opposition. For many it was a difficult time in China's history.
List 3 groups in Tuareg Society and the foods they are associated with. What is the meaning underlying these associations, and what do they tell us about different rolls in society?
- Nobles: food that don't involve hard labor (rice from store, milk, dates) - Restrained social behavior, wealthy
- Smiths: Millet and oily foods (grease the throat, soft) - Participate in storytelling, acting, oral history, etc. Staples of society like millet
- Slaves: Corn (extremely common, requires much work - needs to be pounded) - ag labor, gardening for nobles
What makes Pad Thai an important component of Thai national identity? How did it achieve this status?
Pad Thai was named the national dish by the Prime Minister Phibun ~WWII when there was much famine AND he wanted to "modernize" Thailand (Siam) and distinguish Thai food from Chinese food (create a Thai identity). It is currently promoted heavily, and sold very seriously by street vendors.
Discuss how global food systems act to expand diets for some populations while limiting choices for others. How is world hunger affected by the world food system?
In the world food system supply and demand is skewed away from the traditional elements. In this economic system many countries that have starving citizens are exporting food in lieu of giving it to the needy for monetary purposes.
Food is often a powerful component of identity and memory. Why is this characteristic of so many cultures we have read about? Discuss three examples from our readings where food has this function.
- Pad Thai - national dish, bringing about a national identity
- Cultural revolution restaurants/dishes featuring corn and other less-popular foods
- Horse meat in Italy - found in numerous national dishes, popular in baby food
Several of your readings discuss food, body image, and the cultural values associated with both in an array of environmental settings. How are these three elements related?
Food and body image are clearly related because what we eat directly affects our physical body. Therefor cultural values can be born from this, with the perception of how certain foods will affect the consumer. Good examples are the Tuareg smiths who are associated with oily foods, presumed to grease the throat and allow them to pass down the tales of the past and the 'holy anorexics' of the medieval who were perceived as being closer to god for controlling their need for food.
A study of skeletal remains from the Mycenaean tombs associated with Nestor's Palace at Pylos, Greece revealed that there were gender differences with regard to certain types of food resources. What were the results of this study and what data were presented?
According the the study males has less tooth decay than females, indicating that they were perhaps given a more nutrient-dense diet, and specifically that the males and higher animal protein levels than females. The results were taken from identifying which isotops were present in the bone fragments from at the tombs.
The consumption of certain foods in some societies can signal power and control whereas the refusal of food in other contexts aslo signals power and control. Explain this observation using information from your readings.
This depends on the specific society, for example in the medieval church the refusal of food intake by female members of the clergy was seen to bring them closer to holiness through their suffering, but in Tuareg society the ability to partake in sacred traditions such as tea pouring, and the ritual drink was a status symbol indicative of your role in society.
List 3 examples of foods that can function as subsitutes for animal protein (and still provide adequate protein levels).
Chapulines (grasshoppers) and other insects, spirulina, tofu, nuts, etc
Explain the following quote... Pious men eat what the gods leave over after the offering. Relate this quote to the traditional expected duties of wives in Begali Hindu families.
An example of when food is more than simply subsistence. The most important aspect of food according to this Hindu text is its ceremonial role in appeasing the gods, and only after this has been completed should it be used for subsistence. In traditional families the women are keepers of traditional, and there is a huge amount of food-specific rituals that they must follow including rituals for widows, having men and women eat separately and different quality, and feeding of a son in law on a specific day to show man's status over woman.
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