The readings and podcast this week gave me a whole new perspective into identity and culture about which I had never truly realized. It seems so obvious that food is such a huge part of our lives, and yet it is so easily forgotten in these discussions. Where and what we eat determines so much about our family traditions, our pasttimes, and our heritage, and easily shapes and influences much of our daily lives.
I found the connection between food and family history for descendants of enslaved people particularly interesting. We talked last week about how it is often impossible for many descendants of enslaved people to trace their heritage and origins due to the carelessness and lack of humanity of the settlers that stole people from their homelands. Although it is not the same and will not ever fully make up for this piece of their identity that will forever be lost, I enjoyed reading Twitty’s personal account about the history of food and cooking in his family and about how, even through the tragic and inhumane circumstances that brought them to the United States and forced them to do this type of cooking, it has become an intregral part of his identity and culture.