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Food-and-Language Methodologies: New Article in the Journal of Linguistic Anthropology

“Food and language have frequently been served up together on the same plate at the anthropological research table.” From this starting point, authors Jillian R. Cavanaugh and Kathleen Riley authored an article with collaborators Alexandra Jaffe, Christine Jourdan, Martha Karrebaek, Amy Paugh to provide a fascinating look at emerging food-and-language studies in, “What Words Bring to the Table: The Linguistic Anthropological Toolkit as Applied to the Study of Food.” This article is the second in a series on methods in linguistic anthropology that appears in the new issue of the Journal of Linguistic Anthropology available now on AnthroSource.

The article emerged from a roundtable at the 2013 AAA Annual Meeting entitled, “Food Talk as Semiotic Substance: Steps toward an Integrated Anthropology of Foodways and Discourse.” The authors identify “intriguing parallels” that link food and language and describe methods they have used in studying food and language simultaneously. Anthropologists interested in methods will particularly appreciate the discussion of “(e)merging food-and-language methodologies.” Punctuated by author reflections and contextualizing narrative, the authors provide unique insights into their use of anthropological methods in studying food and language, including participant-observation, ethnolinguistic analysis, food-oriented interviews, language socialization, collaborative transcription, and semiotic analysis of documents and media. In concluding the authors note their hopes for introducing this line of discussion:

First, broadly speaking, we hope to promote the value of looking across cultural modalities, not only language and food, but also language and a range of other expressive media. Secondly, and more specifically, we are seeking to encourage the application of linguistic anthropological and linguistic ethnographic methods and analytical tools to the study of food in order to open up new and productive terrains and topics (94).

To read the article, login to AnthroSource or click here.

Interested in more research, reviews and commentaries in the Journal of Linguistic Anthropology? Check out the new issue on AnthroSource!

International Collaborative Virtual Seminar

Join the collaborative virtual seminar pilot project this month with our colleagues from the Associação Brasileria de Anthropologia (ABA), Canadian Anthropology Society/Société canadienne d’anthropologie (CASCA), and the European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA) to bring you a virtual seminar on language and anthropological knowledge.

There are four papers which are the core of this debate. Monolinguism is a disease by Bruna Franchetto (ABA); Thinking through difference. The language of anthropological collaboration by Penelope Harvey (EASA); Political economies of language: power, epistemology and the representation of research by Alexandra Jaffe (AAA); and Transformations and linguistic alienations by Christine Jourdan (CASCA). Papers are now available on the website as PDFs. Add your comments and questions now, they will be posted on October 13. Join the presenters and four commentators for their online discussion on October 15 at 7am Pacific time, 10am Eastern time, 11am S. America Eastern Standard Time, 3pm London time, and 4pm Paris time. Participants will be able to see and hear the discussions, live.

While there is not a charge to participate in the webinar, please register in advance.


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