New Zealand Symposium of Gastronomy
Christchurch, November 25 & 26, 2017
ARA Institute of Canterbury
Convenors: Amir Sayadabdi, Saman Hassibi & Bill Bryce.
Food and food-related activities are important, yet often taken-for-granted parts of our everyday lives. The biological imperative that makes eating a necessity usually makes us look at it as a mundane practice. Cooking, too, especially in its 'domestic' context, may seem insignificant and uninteresting.
Shopping for food, chopping and washing ingredients, and cleaning up after a meal rarely seem poetic or even important. However, the very everydayness of these activities can evolve into meaningful cultural and social symbols, depicting individuals' or societies' relationship with different issues ranging from nutrition, health and hygiene to gender norms, national identity and memory.
By looking at the everydayness of food-related activities, we come to understand how societies feed themselves, and therefore, we get a better understanding of their cultures, their past, present, and future. By observing and studying everyday food-related practices, habits, and values that are constantly being passed in ordinary kitchens from one generation to the next, we can open a window to also understanding non-everyday foodways such as those practiced in sacred rituals, mourning, and celebrations.
Being a Sort-of Canadian Abroad: Food and Identity in Everyday Life as Viewed through a Butter Tart
I am Canadian by birth, but I have lived outside of Canada for 44 years, 31 of which I have been in New Zealand or the South Pacific. Despite what my accent may suggest, I do not feel particularly Canadian, nor do I identify as Canadian. Indeed, visits to Canada confirm that I am for the most part, a stranger in the country of my birth. There is one thing however that never fails to bring out the latent Canadian in me: butter tarts. Relatively unknown outside of Canada, butter tarts are the quintessential Canadian pastry. Canadian cuisine is highly regional, but the butter tart in its various iterations is enjoyed country-wide. Preparing and consuming butter tarts is the material manifestation of my Canadian identity. This presentation will explore this little-known, everyday treat from Canada from historical, cultural and personal perspectives.
Donna Lee Brien
Margaret Dunn and Her 'Everyday' Cookbook, Mothers Best Recipes (1974).
Making a living as a professional writer has long been a challenge for many women writers in Australia. As Miles Franklin lamented almost a century ago “in Australia the writer has ceased to have any of that social notice or esteem which is kept for those who succeed in business or become conspicuous in sport”, and most women writers continue to struggle to gain any significant notice or esteem. This presentation uses Margaret Dunn's popular, everyday cookbook, Mother's Best Recipes (1974), to explore her life and career. It also offers information about taste, cookery and the publication of cookbooks in Australia at this time.
Recipes, Armistice and Remembrance: Cookery Books and the Cult of Housewifery 1918-1928
Cookery books and recipes serve as a powerful method for understanding the role women played to foster the memory of war and peace. Investigating the everyday visual culture of cookery books combined with the sensory experience of seeing, touching and reading such books reveals how nationalism, patriotism, baking traditions and the cult of housewifery intersect. While contemporary newspaper accounts from 1918-28 reported Peace Cake served at Armistice remembrance events, Peace Cake recipes did not take as firm a hold in the New Zealand baking lexicon or in the commemoration of New Zealand's WWI as the Anzac biscuit recipe did.
Gastronomy and the Mouth-Brain Axis
The proximity of the mouth to the brain is likely not an accident of evolution and this association with gastronomy is often overlooked. Most cranial nerves are involved in eating and drinking, be it sight, smell, taste, sound and oral processing. The mouth accounts for a large amount of brain function in relation to taste, proprioception and oral processing. Oral processing comprises mastication, ingestion and initiates digestion, and has vital role in the perception of texture and flavour, and is essential for the pleasure evoked by eating and drinking. Saliva, often ignored in gastronomy, contributing rheological and tribological properties to oral processing by contributing lubrication and flavour development. Things can go wrong ranging from biting your tongue, iatrogenic dry mouth, loss of dental function and other conditions associated with age, pathology and neglect. Two practical examples of the mouth-brain axis will demonstrate the association between the brain and the mouth.
Carrots, Pumpkin, Cabbage, Onions - Living on the Edge
When incomes are low and major costs are fixed, food spending is whatever is left over. In this paper, I BRIEFLY provide an overview of food insecurity and food deserts in New Zealand, using the narrow range of available sources; set these concepts in the context of current poverty, food, and gender discourses; consider the items which make up the basic diet for Otago University's annual survey of food costs; and discuss the prospect of living on them. This paper relates to everyday food choices, including historical, cultural and economic aspects, and the politics of everyday food.
Food Insecurity in Everyday Life: The Case of the Kopa Family
This presentation documents how the Kopa family responds to food insecurity in culturally-patterned, ad-hoc and agentive ways. My analysis of a series of eight qualitative interviews with family members, including photo-elicitation and supermarket shop-along techniques, and extensive field notes from more casual research interactions such as shared meals, reveals how food insecurity shapes the family's social practices surrounding the procurement, consumption, and sharing of food. In particular, the way in which small everyday practices of adaptation central to 'making do' speak to the compromises, tactics and relationships central to navigating food insecurity. Experiences of food insecurity are emotionally laden and not always easy to adequately articulate verbally or visually. These are instead invoked mimetically through reference to particular objects and specific social practices. This case study reveals the complexities of one family's situation, allowing us to avoid dehumanizing tropes common to public deliberations regarding poverty and food insecurity.
Food and Celebration
Food as theatre, food as entertainment, food as celebration the blurring of boundaries between theatrical, culinary experiences, and tradition, the interweaving with a hint of magic, extravagance and formality. The celebration of a feast or banquet provides a visual experience which allows the audience to be entertained, and to participate in a variety of multisensory experiences through food, spectacle and entertainment. The consumption of food becomes not only a social event but a participatory one as well, food expressed as a symbol of dinner as theatre, where diners become actors in their own performance. The social elements of dining provide a reflective effect on our enjoyment of the meal, with the notion that meals have created the core of human social interaction, the main daily activity that makes humans socialise. Feasts originally began as a secular celebration, associated with religious celebrations commemorating saints' days and other important dates set in the church calendar, whereas the banquet developed as an individual celebration, often displaying wealth, power, prestige and conspicuous consumption. Feast or banquet - occasions to step beyond - everyday food.
Evolving Culinary Traditions
The cuisine of France has dominated the professional kitchens of the world for generations, but this authority has in recent years been challenged in a number of ways. Today, there is a new philosophy that seeks to use food to frame a national identity; to draw inspiration from local culinary traditions and ingredients and to use and reinterpret them in new ways. The popularity of ethnic cuisines with their culinary techniques and introduction of new ingredients has also been an important influence on professional cookery. In addition, innovation in food science, with much provided by new technology such as sous-vide and the use of liquid nitrogen, has transformed the eating experience. Add to this a focus on environmental sustainability and respect for food and its production. While French cuisine still provides the foundation of culinary training, it too is able to evolve and recognise these new influences.
This paper seeks to give an historical perspective to the student of hospitality and to explain, in a general way, the different threads of our evolving culinary tradition.
Celebratory Cake and Misrecognised Sausages: The Gifting and Giving of Domestic Foods
This paper reports on the gifting beliefs, values and practices of low socio-economic and middle-class women. The women (n= 12) were interviewed about their gifting practices and kept gifting diaries.
Most maintained clear ontological and ethical distinctions between gifting and giving, with the former being the reserve of 'special' or momentous occasions, and the latter an everyday, ordinary affair. Gifting was often marked by celebratory foods such as birthday cakes in which the commodity form is largely obscured. In contrast, giving was regarded as 'something you just do', an ordinary, even banal, activity such as visibly purchasing and cooking sausages for an everyday family meal. Carrier (1995) argues that gifting in the West is in part a form of false consciousness, which rather than transcending commodity praxis significantly entrenches this hegemony. Pivoting this critical perspective, I argue, that as gifting and giving both reproduce a morality of empathetic care and sociality, the framing of everyday giving as 'not gifting' is arguably another misrecognised ethic (Bourdieu 1977 ). As an adjunct form of symbolic violence, it is equally an interpellation (Althusser 2004 ) to the routine enactment of good citizen-consumers, citizen-producers and citizen-kindred.
Jesse Hsu & Naiara Carrillo
Supermarkets, Pedagogies, and Everyday Food Practices: A Meta-Synthesis
In terms of industrial foodways, the modern supermarket is arguably the site that exerts the most influence on everyday food knowledge and practices. It would be difficult to overstate supermarket's role in restructuring our everyday food life. While the supermarket's influence in the industrial food complex of food manufacturers, distributors, and growers has been well- documented, what has been overlooked its educational effect through its myriad of multimodal strategies. This presentation examines how supermarkets act as spaces of learning through uncovering the conceptual links between supermarket retail spaces, pedagogy, and everyday food practices. Through conducting a meta-synthesis of thirty key studies with an underlying emphasis on everyday food practices, we synthesize and map conceptually how layers of aesthetic and functional meaning present in supermarket spaces create what Wu (2010) calls an “embodied spectacle” that instructs the wider culture how to think of and act with our food.
Milk and Meat: Cattle in Iron-Age Ireland
The Iron-Age Irish royal site of Dún Ailinne has produced large quantities of cattle remains. This has widely been interpreted as evidence for cattle-based feasting. The use of a relationship-based approach provides a more comprehensive understanding of societies that relied on cattle, and the role cattle and cattle consumption played in the Iron-Age. A carefully considering age profile constructed from tooth-wear analysis and predictive modelling of post-cranial elements has determined that cattle feasting was not at odds with an economy reliant on dairying, but rather supported it. Moreover, the needs of the Dún Ailinne cattle, in addition to what they could offer, provided the framework for the daily lives of their human counterparts.
Eating and the Everyday: Constructing Comfort in Time and Space
Comfort food – that which is routine, yet often sought in exceptional moments of distress or pleasure – is fodder to discuss the remarkability of the mundane. Using the perspectives of de Certeau (1984) and Felski (1999), comfort food is characterized by its relationship to society, particularly the qualities of time and space, as interaction with industrial structures and social ideologies, respectively. First, in our search for comfort through food we push against the enduring pressures of linear time imposed by industrial society to mindfully engage in an experience that figuratively suspends time by returning us to a conceptual place that is known. Next, the cyclical nature of our interaction with the mundane socially constructs our definitions of comfort food, which are themselves acts of conscious/unconscious repetition, marked by characteristics of everyday life: relationship to change, historical connection, and identity. Combined, these perspectives define comfort food in differing terms of the everyday.
Helen Leach & Jane Teal
Transmitting 'Everyday' Cookery: A Case Study from Christchurch
The cookbook Colonial Everyday Cookery (1901) claimed to cater for the everyday meals of ordinary New Zealand households. Inspection of its contents, however, suggests that it offered what contemporary cooking teachers called 'high-class cookery'. We have examined the careers of three influential teachers who taught 'plain cooking', 'advanced' and 'high-class cookery' in Christchurch in the period 1885–1945. Do their cookbooks provide a more accurate picture of 'everyday' cookery? Mrs Harman and Mrs Gard'ner's The New Zealand Domestic Cookery Book (1900–1905) was aimed at young women who needed to run a household, while Mrs Gard'ner's Recipes for Use in School Cookery Classes provided instruction for primary pupils learning to cook plain meals. Between 1907 and 1956 it went through ten editions (with revisions by Miss Blackmore). Its recipes were straightforward, economical and familiar. The series gives a picture of everyday New Zealand cookery as it responded to half a century of scientific and socioeconomic changes.
Everyday Religion in the School Canteen
'Everyday religion' describes studies that emphasise religious experience in relation to social life, social institutions and social policy (Ammerman 2006). This paper reports on a study of everyday religion and secularism (laïcité) in French public schools. Education policy sets out strict guidelines for how schools should be secular, with the public school even known colloquially as 'the secular' ('la laïque'). From 1989, this policy repeatedly made international headlines through attempts to regulate Muslim girls' school dress. Meanwhile, a less-publicised, but no less-acrimonious, debate was playing out in school canteens. The default practice in French schools (public and private) is for all students to sit down together at lunchtime, eating a meal provided by the school. But—in an increasingly multicultural, multireligious society, with peculiar historical reticence about naming such phenomena and where, furthermore, Catholic roots run deep—what should a laïque serve? As the candidacy of Marine Le Pen gained ground in the recent presidential elections, canteen controversies stormed past school gates, into mayoral press releases and onto newspaper front pages. The very basis of the laïque is inclusivity; so how does that happen in the dining room? With fish on Fridays, Kosher, Halal and vegetarian options; or by sternly overriding differences, making bacon consumption a criterion of laïcité? Using theories of everyday religion, I analyse what the French canteen controversies can tell us about France's distinctive interpretations of social inclusion, diversity and solidarity. Finally, I ask what the controversies in school canteens can tell us about the work of shared meals in escalating or defusing social tensions.
'Anzacs' No Everyday Biscuit: The Uniqueness to Survive and the Power to Unite
The Anzac biscuit (or 'Anzacs' as they are affectionately known) is no everyday biscuit. This research explores the origin and evolution along with the myths and legends surrounding the Anzac biscuit. The presentation will show that the Anzac biscuit continues to unite and represent the ANZAC spirit and in the process, has given us an unbroken Australian and New Zealand food tradition which has a powerful connection to both countries national identity.
Are the Gilaks Really What They Eat?
In this paper, I examine the everyday food habits of the Gilaks, an ethnic group residing mainly along the southwest coasts of the Caspian Sea in the province of Gilan in Northern Iran, where a distinct climate condition has created distinct eating habits and culinary preparation which has, in turn, resulted in the formation of a distinct identity.
The Immediacy of the Everyday: Reflections on Post-Ideological Foodism
Foodies have steadily risen in prominence in recent decades here and in similar markets (Barr & Levy, 1985; Johnston & Baumann, 2010; de Solier, 2013). Yet notably few attempts have been made categorise foodism in religious, political or philosophical terms (although see Symons, 2007). These reflections aim to explain that neglect, and, as a by-product, to offer a credible classification. Religious enthusiasts no longer bother labelling foodies as gluttons. Right-wingers do not harp on about Slow Food's socialist roots. For that matter, foodies themselves hardly seem to proclaim foodism as an –ism. They do not march in the streets. (Do foodie blogs even attract trolls?) Food activists might be labelled issue-by-issue, such as concerned with food quality, inequality, worker exploitation, or waste. Otherwise, their most dangerous slogan seems to be “fresh, local”. In this, foodies might exemplify the “post-ideological”. As introduced by Francis Fukuyama in The End of History (1992), the general idea is that ideological evolution has concluded in broad agreement, with Fukuyama finding acceptance of “Western liberal democracy”. As an alternative, this paper ponders whether the secret to foodism's relative lack of notice relies on the invisibility of the everyday. Our meals are simply too immediate, and too accepted, to appear anything so grand as ideological. Given that foodism is more a practice that an attitude, foodies are also more interested in doing life well, rather than right. Yet that might say something about post-ideology. It hints that foodism is close to eighteenth-century, Jeffersonian liberalism in its Epicurean commitment to eating and drinking under some such banner as “life, liberty and pursuit of happiness”.
Charlotte Elizabeth Wigley (nee Turrell) was trained at the Christchurch School of Domestic Instruction. In 1903 she edited a recipe book for the Anglican Parish of Papanui. Why? What were sources of her recipes? Were they 'everyday'?
Xuan-Bach Tran (Alex)
“What Did You Eat Yesterday?”: Reading Home-Cooked Food in Yoshinaga Fumi's Boys Love Manga
“What did you eat yesterday?” is an ongoing manga created by Yoshinaga Fumi. It tells stories about a Japanese gay couple in their middle age with their ordinary mundane lives in which the author depicts home cooked dinners and the kitchen table as the central place of the manga where most things happen. Different from the traditional gourmet manga, gastronomic boys love (BL) manga, mostly written by and for women, has used food and homosexuality in conveying love as the ultimate goal. Investigating this iconic work of Yoshinaga Fumi offers not only understanding but another dimension in reading food in BL manga. Furthermore, I will argue that the power of food in gastronomy study is beyond the material realm where reading, or perhaps even imagining, is as important as eating.
“Mumfood”: Recording the Everyday
Few recipe books attempt to record the everyday reality of domestic food production. Most, even handwritten manuscript cookbooks, document the what and the how of cooking without explaining the why, and usually fail to capture the provenance of the recipes they record. Overly proscriptive, unnecessarily romantic, unrealistically exotic, too simplistic or too complicated, none come close to describing what happens in my kitchen and how my experiences have shaped what I cook and the methods I use. “Mumfood” is my bid to commit the everyday to paper and to pass on a useful and realistic cookbook that incorporates the what, how and why of the food that I have prepared for my family. This paper considers the daily routine of meal making and how it might be captured in words.
Hockney, High Heels and Hotcakes at #breakfast
David Hockney, one of Britain's most influential and challenging contemporary artists, juxtaposes naïve depictions of the everyday – objects we may pass without seeing – with complex multi-point perspectives of vast landscapes. Borrowing Hockney's approach to 'seeing', my research considers routine and habitual eating that may be taken for granted in our everyday lives, in particular, breakfast and brunch. It considers the minutiae and the mundane of what, when, and how we eat breakfast and brunch in order to illuminate the broader complexities of our quotidian practice that in turn impacts cultural and social change within contemporary New Zealand.
Alys's Adventures in New Zealand
This presentation examines the visit by Alys Lowth, to New Zealand during 1905-1907. My main reference is her book about the visit, Emerald Hours in New Zealand, published in 1907. An established travel writer she visited the country to investigate the dairy industry, or so it was reported, on her arrival. That she did not write about this subject is not of concern as my research made me believe that much of the story is made up. If the truth cannot be given, or found, at least the descriptions of everyday food will be of interest, even if also untrue. Alys Lowth spins a remarkable tale offering an insight into how an upper middle class Englishwoman, supposedly well experienced in travel to foreign parts, viewed our strange country and the everyday life of its inhabitants.
“How's ours? Pretty wonky!”: Memories of food in war time Wellington 1942-1945
How's ours? Pretty wonky! Is a story of a childhood memories of food during the time of rationing during World War 2. As was common at the time, Mother, a senior shorthand typist before the war, was man-powered to work in the Health Department. Father was overseas 1939-45. My Grandmother did all the cooking, including baking. Food was plainly cooked and as nutritious as they could manage. My Wilson family lived nearby with my Aunt and cousin - both families had similar diets. They were Scots – the Wilsons from Fishertown, Nairn emigrated to Island Bay after WW1 and the Rogers - my Mother's family emigrated from Glasgow in 1908.
Dr TRACY BERNO is an Associate Professor in Gastronomy at AUT University. Her interests include the relationship between cuisine and tourism, and sustainable food systems. She is particularly interested in agriculture — tourism linkages, local food systems, community-based tourism development, culinary tourism and tourism and gastronomy. Tracy has researched and published widely on the cuisine of the South Pacific and has co-authored two award winning books on South Pacific cuisine with chef Robert Oliver.
DONNA LEE BRIEN, PhD, is Professor of Creative Industries at Central Queensland University, Australia. Co-founding convenor of the Australasian Food Studies Network, Donna is co-editor of the Australasian Journal of Popular Culture, and an editorial board member of Locale: Australasian-Pacific Journal of Regional Food Studiesand TEXT: The Journal of Writing and Writing Courses. With a research focus on food writers and their influence, forthcoming books include the The Routledge Companion to Literature and Food (co-edited with Lorna Piatti-Farnell).
NAIARA CARRILLO is a doctoral candidate in the University of Queensland Business School. Her research interests include supermarket packaging, consumer experience, and multimodality.
Dr JOANNA COBLEY, Adjunct Senior Fellow, History, University of Canterbury, specialises in how people interact with heritage. From 2006-08, she produced the award-winning podcast The Museum Detective, in 2007 and from 2012-16 she taught history at UC and then moved into research management.
GRAHAM ELLENDER graduated in Dental Surgery, University of London, worked in general practice for four years before taking appointments at the University of Western Australia, and then University of Melbourne where he completed MDSc in Biomaterials and Restorative Dentistry, and PhD in Experimental Pathology. Eventually, desiring country life he started a “one day a week practice” in Central Victoria with the intention of remaining an academic, BUT the urge to become “a country bumpkin” prevailed and Jenny and he bought forty acres and developed a vineyard and winery with an “Osteria”. Having sold, Graham s now residing in Adelaide.
Dr ANNE ELSE lives in Wellington and has worked as an editor and freelance writer of articles and books on New Zealand women and society. These include A Question of Adoption: Closed Stranger Adoption in New Zealand, 1944-1974 (1991); False Economy: New Zealanders face the conflict between paid and unpaid work (1996);Hidden Hunger: Food & Low Income in New Zealand (for New Zealand Network Against Food Poverty, 1999); and The Colour of Food: A Memoir of Life, love and Dinner (Awa Press, 2014). She reviews for The Listener and Nine to Noon, and blogs on food at Something Else to Eat.
ELIOT GEE is currently completing the MA Anthropology of Food degree at SOAS, University of London ('17). His interests include meat consumption, sustainable agriculture, migration studies, and education. He completed his BA in Cultural Anthropology from Princeton University ('13), with a certificate in Visual Arts. He has worked in rural China and Thailand, and grew up in a farming community in the Hudson Valley, NY.
REBEKAH GRAHAM is a recipient of the Massey University Vice-Chancellor's Doctoral Scholarship and is completing her PhD in Societal Psychology. Her research considers the ways in which food-related traditions invoke connection and belonging, linking people to each other and to broader socio-cultural narratives. Specifically, her PhD examines food insecurity within the context of poverty and hardship. Through considering the ways in which food insecurity shapes people's social practices surrounding the procurement, consumption, and sharing of food, broader structural issues contributing to inequality and poverty are made visible.
CHRISTINE T. HALL (MA Gastronomy) is a Senior Lecturer/Chef, Programme Leader Master of Gastronomy at Auckland University of Technology with research interests in cultural food history, Maori and New Zealand food culture, food sovereignty, gastronomy.
SAMAN HASSIBI is a doctoral student in Management at University of Canterbury. Her research interests are food culture, food history, and food in media as well as Iranian food and domestic culture. Her upcoming book is a translation of the oldest Persian manuscript
CELIA HAY's great love of delicious food, fine wine and the art of hospitality led her to establish Hay's Restaurant in 1994 and the New Zealand School of Food and Wine in 1995 in Christchurch. Using organic lamb, sourced from her family farm in Pigeon Bay, Banks Peninsula, Celia was able to carve out a unique dining experience at Hay's. On February 22, 2011 a series of devastating earthquakes struck Christchurch forcing the closure of Hay's Restaurant and the relocation of the New Zealand School of Food and Wine to Auckland. Celia is a qualified chef and holds the WSET (London) Diploma of Wine. She has a Bachelor of Arts in History, Master of Education (Distinction) and MBA Master of Business Administration from Canterbury University. Drawing on Celia's wealth of experience as a chef and restaurateur she has been able to develop a range of comprehensive NZQA programmes to reflect the growing skills needed by hospitality businesses. Celia's book, How to Grow your Hospitality Business: A Guide for Owners and Managers provides invaluable advice to hospitality students and people wishing to establish their own business. The 3rd edition will be published in November 2017. In 2014, Celia published The New Zealand Wine Guide which was awarded the Gourmand World Book Awards Best in the World for Wine and Tourism.
PETER HOWLAND lectures in sociology at Massey University, Palmerston North. His research interests include middle-class identity, consumption, morality and sociality; wine production, consumption and tourism; gifting relations and practices; and Lotto and gambling.
JESSE HSU is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. His research focuses on understanding how urban food systems evolve, especially interpreted through the frameworks of public pedagogy, sustainable transitions, and multimodality.
KELILA JAFFE is a doctoral candidate in the Food Studies Program. She received a BA with distinction in anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania, before attending the University of Auckland, where she earned an MA in anthropology with a concentration in archaeology. Kelila's research interests include past foodways, domestication, and zooarchaeology. She has conducted fieldwork in Fiji, New Zealand, and Hawaii, and has worked with numerous museums and institutions. Her dissertation examines human-animal interactions in dietary transitions through the archaeological record. Originally from Sonoma, CA, Kelila is also a professional chef.
JESSICA LARSEN is a fourth-year Doctoral Student in Communication at University of Illinois at Chicago. Her research agenda includes food as communication, everyday life digital cultures, and qualitative ethnographic and visual methods. Additionally, Jessica has ten years of ongoing industry engagement in experience design and the qualitative assessment of interaction in online space.
HELEN LEACH is Emeritus Professor in Anthropology, University of Otago. She has a special interest in the history of food production and cookery. Recent publications include The Pavlova Story (2008, with Mary Browne), The Twelve Cakes of Christmas (2011, with Raelene Inglis and Mary Browne), and the edited volume From Kai to Kiwi Kitchen (2010). Her latest book is Kitchens, the New Zealand Kitchen in the 20th century (2014).
MARION MADDOX is a Professor of Politics at Macquarie University and has taught Australian politics and religious studies in universities in Australia and New Zealand. She holds PhDs in theology (Flinders 1992) and political philosophy (UNSW 2000), and is author of For God and Country (2001), God Under Howard (2005) and Taking God to School (2014).
ALLISON REYNOLDS has held appointments as Gastronomer in Residence at Carrick Hill and The Queen Adelaide Club. Her passion for food history and old cookery books continues and has resulted in presentations and engagement with regional and local communities through her South Australian Cookbook Road Show. Allison's paper on Sallie Heysen (wife of Sir Hans Heysen and Mother of Nora Heysen) was included (chapter 13) in Art and Food published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing. Allison's book on the Anzac biscuit will be published by Wakefield Press later this year.
AMIR SAYADABDI is a PhD student in Anthropology at the University of Canterbury. His current research focuses on food and identity among the Iranian diaspora in New Zealand. He is also engaged with projects on Persian culinary history, the first of which will be published by Prospect Books in April 2018.
MICHAEL SYMONS is an independent food historian who gained his qualifications for this role by running a restaurant, working as a journalist, and gaining a PhD in Sociology. He is the author of One Continuous Picnic, the history of eating in Australia (1982, 2007), and the award-winning A History of Cooks and Cooking (2000). While living in New Zealand, he joined the Marsden-funded project, publishing his resulting papers in a range of international journals.
JANE TEAL is Archivist for the Anglican Diocese of Christchurch and Christ's College.
PREETHA THOMAS is an Associate Lecturer in Public Health Nutrition at the Faculty of Medicine, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia. Her research interests include working to achieve a culture centred approach to migrant dietary practice and health, and sustainable local food systems. Her passion is cooking – all manner of food, from all over the world – and her kitchen and dining table are always open to anyone who would care to eat!
XUAN-BACH TRAN (ALEX) graduated from Swinburne University in 2012 and William Angliss Institute (Australia) in 2014. His background is cooking and culinary management with roughly 4 years in business consultancy, training, and marketing. Besides, Alex is also a cookbook author and editor. From 2015 to 2016, he worked as South Vietnam General Manager for KAfe Group (Vietnam). In early 2017, he started the Master of Gastronomy at AUT. Alex plans to continue to study a PhD and pursue a career in academia. His research focus includes Japan's culture and society, semiotics of gastronomy, and sustainable food systems.
In a previous life, ALISON VINCENT qualified as a food technologist and worked in product development in the food industry before seeing the light and completing an Arts degree majoring in Australian history. Alison is currently a PhD candidate at Central Queensland University and her research explores the writing of restaurant critics in Sydney and Melbourne in the 1970s and 1980s and the role of restaurant criticism in establishing standards of good taste. In the meantime, she has been cooking dinner for more than forty years!
ROLENE WATSON is a MA candidate at the School of Social and Cultural Studies/Te Kura Mahinga Tangata, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. Her research interests include community led development, social enterprise and the anthropology of food. Rolene's everyday interests include textiles, travel, camping and all things culinary.
JOHN WEBSTER is a long-time supporter of food history and has presented papers at past gatherings in Auckland, Wellington, Havelock North and Christchurch. Along with the other presenters, his talks have appeared as articles in subsequent issues of the Aristologist. In retirement, he has given himself over to historical research on a wide range of subjects, including collecting old cookbooks – the best day so far was harvesting twenty books in five minutes!
LORRAINE WILSON is currently involved in research and writing on the life of Winifred Campbell – daughter of Sir John Logan and Emma Campbell of Auckland. She lives in a cottage above the beach at Blockhouse Bay which is one of the oldest homes in the area. Together with their short, stocky, Celtic stature, Lorraine has inherited a love of cooking and the importance of always having food available for whomsoever should call by.