Culinaria is a multidisciplinary food studies initiative that blends research excellence with community engagement and student (graduate and undergraduate) research experience.
Our projects provide new insights into some of the major questions of the field of food studies: The place of food in cultural identity and expression; the relationship between food, diaspora, and inter-ethnic/inter-cultural contact in Canada and beyond; commodity production and labours, from slavery to the age of empire to the present-day; the links between food systems, health, gender, and family.
Food is a source of identity – we define ourselves in what we eat. This is particularly true in the diverse foodscape of Toronto and its Scarborough neighbourhoods. In conjunction with the larger project of City Food, our collaboration begins a long-term and longitudinal study of the foodways of our neighbourhoods, combining GIS mapping, archival development, digital presentation, and culinary ethnography.
‘Culinaria’, as the name of our centre and our intellectual intervention, represents new directions in the field of food studies. The core academic mission of the centre is to unite scholars with related interests and encourage dialogue and partnership with a range of stakeholders. In so doing, we will provide new opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students while advancing leading-edge research.