Problems with Home Food: Managing Stigma through Foodways [virtual]

Diane Tye (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

A common theme in food writing, from social media posts to foodways scholarship, is food’s ability to ground and offer comfort. But food that embodies warm memories of childhood and home can also make us feel uncomfortable. Shared publicly, it can instill feelings of embarrassment and shame if outsiders consider it either weirdly foreign or too mundane. Drawing on my own efforts to publicly distance myself from food of my white Anglo Protestant background, this autoethnographic analysis reflects on perceptions of food eaten in the home as “less than.” I explore issues that arise when stigmatized “home food” is replaced by seemingly more acceptable, yet potentially problematic, public facing alternatives.

Part of 08-05 Stigma: Foodways at the Intersections of What is Marginalized and Centralized [hybrid], Saturday, October 15, 10:30 am–12:30 pm