Call for Papers:  Food as Voice: Historical Perspectives. Malta, 8-10 November 2017

Food as Voice: Historical Perspectives, Malta, 8–10 November 2017

No food, no life, no history. The acquisition and preparation of food holds a central position in the development of societies, from prehistoric times to the present day. Food forms the basis of the greatest social revolution in history, while laying down the foundations of those structures and institutions we today refer to as ‘civilization’.  Apart from its physiological importance, food is also
a cultural phenomenon. According to Arjun Appadurai, food is ‘a highly condensed social fact’ and ‘a marvellous plastic kind of collective representation’. As a cultural object, food is a means through which humans communicate behaviours. It is a channel leading to understanding of self, of behaviours and of social interactions with others, providing for the study of the multifaceted material and symbolic meaning of food in history.

Food as Voice: Historical Perspectives is the theme chosen for the Malta Historical Society’s biennial History Week to be held in November 2017.  The MHS welcomes researchers, academics and doctoral students to present innovative and original papers with a historical perspective. A selection of the papers will be published in the Society’s Proceedings of History Week 2017.

Applicants are encouraged to consider a wide range of methodologies and subjects in their approach. Some possible areas might include:
Agriculture and Food
Architecture and Food
Food in Art
Food-ways and trade routes
Industrial aspects of Food
Medical aspects of Food
New Foods and their impact
Rituals and popular culture
Food and Society
The transmission of knowledge on Food

Please send proposals of up to 500 words for 20 minute papers, together with a short CV, and contact information (email, telephone and postal address) to and by no later than 30 June 2017.

The MHS organizing committee and advisory board will make a selection of papers to be presented. Submitted abstracts will be held in full confidence during the reviewing process. Successful candidates will be notified by 15 July 2017.

Successful candidates are to present the full text of their paper to the MHS by 5 October 2017. Submitted papers will be held in full confidence during the reviewing process.


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