Food is one of the key aspects through which we represent ourselves individually and as a community. It is also located at the core of many social issues and interests (Lizie 2014), and the ways through which such relationships are constructed and communicated discursively speak of power, hegemony and ideology revealing the unequal and often problematic relationships within the food system. Food features as a powerful symbol in art, reminding us of associations it can acquire related to gender, class and ethnicity. Also, it is through food-related activities, such as restaurant spaces and eating manners, that most of us communicate with (and are being communicated to) throughout our daily lives. Given such centrality of food, there has lately been an increasing scholarly interest in topics at the intersection of communication and food studies. While initially confined to private, often feminine and certainly not academic discussions, in the last decades, food has been embraced as a worthwhile topic of study across the humanities and social sciences, from history to political studies and beyond (e.g. Scholliers 2007), suggesting a need for an international platform related to food and communication to discuss current developments, new ideas and make scholarly connections.
Origin and Aim
This conference, which comes out of the FoodKom Research Network, established in 2015 in Örebro University (Sweden), and a Communicating Food symposium at the University of Chester (UK) in September 2017, aims to bring together researchers that work in the areas of food and communication, be it academically or non-academically. It aims to establish a regular, biannual platform which will offer scholars space to share and discuss research at the intersection of communication and food studies, but also at the intersection of academic scholarship and professionals that work in the areas concerned with communicating food. Apart from academic papers, this conference also aims to host papers that share a non-academic perspective to the world of food communication but that speak to the current issues related to foodcommunication in any capacity. Furthermore, in order to explore ways through which food can be communicated, we encourage participants to communicate their research findings or ideas via various (creative) forms of communication, possibly going beyond “classic” academic presentations.
All topics at the intersection of food and communication and communication-related disciplines of any methodology, are welcome at this conference, covering all geographical areas and historic periods, such as, but not limited to:
- Food and the media (incl. film, newspapers, magazines, television etc.)
- Food and art / food as art
- Food and language
- Food advice and cookbooks
- Food and governmental discourse
- Communicating food through education / food and teaching (including teaching in schools from practical perspective)
- Professional communication related to food (e.g. chefs, restaurants)
- Semiotics of food
- Food and corporate discourse (advertising, marketing, etc.)