Special Issue of Italian American Review on Italian-American Foodways; Abstracts submitted by May 1

full name / name of organization: 
Italian American Review published by Queens College's John D. Calandra Italian American Institute
contact email: 
rocco.marinaccio@manhattan.edu; pnaccarato@mmm.edu

Italian and Italian-American food has a long history in the homes, markets, and restaurants of the United States. For many immigrants, the hunger and food shortages associated with la miseria (literally, "misery") were a primary motivation for emigration, and thus the foodways these immigrants and their descendants brought to and developed in the United States were not only a means for maintaining ethnic identity and culture, but also a marker of success and assimilation. In addition, given that these foodways emerged as the United States' first notable "ethnic cuisine," they have long functioned as a primary representation of that ethnicity to American society at large -- a context, then, in which Italian-American identity and culture were expressed, encountered, negotiated, and re-formed over time.

This special issue will build on existing scholarship in the fields of history, anthropology, and folklore and folklife studies, and it welcomes contributions from those working in the area of food studies. Overall, this special issue of Italian American Review proposes to investigate a range of historical and contemporary topics related to Italian-American foodways, with the goal of broadening the scope of scholarly discussion and exploring innovative approaches to research. To this end, all submissions should demonstrate knowledge of previous scholarship and identify theoretical perspectives. Suggested themes include, but are not limited to:

• Representations of Italian-American foodways in popular culture
• Critical studies of Italian-American culinary literature (cookbooks, memoirs, etc.)
• Regional variations in Italian-American foodways
• Relations between Italian and Italian-American foodways
• Mass-marketing and "branding" Italian-American foodways
• Histories of Italian-American restaurants, food merchants, and food producers
• The evolution of Italian-American foodways
• The chef as Italian-American icon
• Foodways, assimilation, and national identity
• Foodways and class, gender, and/or sexual identity
• Relations between Italian-American foodways and other ethnic American foodways
• Italian-American food establishments (restaurants, markets, etc.), ethnic neighborhoods, and the urban landscape
• Italian-American foodways and the politics of food
• Comparative discussion with other communities within the United States or with parts of the Italian diaspora.

Guest Editors: Rocco Marinaccio, Manhattan College and Peter Naccarato, Marymount Manhattan College

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