 TIME: 6pm – 7.30PM

Food is a culturally defined element and cultures, like religions, have always played a fundamental role in defining what is or is not edible. Every food practice reflects the cultural and social values of a community, as well as its material and economic conditions. The (religious) history and anthropology of food investigate these dynamics. Food must be considered as the expression of the social status of individuals, but also religious and cultural groups, while biological appetite is always transformed into culturally determined appetite. In our society, religious diversity occupies an important space, traceable in varied and diverse forms of belief, and it is therefore necessary to explore which cultures (and religions) construct today’s food identity. Gastronomy is a metaphor. We are what we eat. Rules and habits related to production, consumption and distribution as well as the voluntary absence of food in practices of abstinence, renunciation and fasting bring into focus the ways and moments of cohesion, innovation and creation of cultural and religious identities that make up our societies.

Mariachiara Giorda is an associate professor of History of Religions at the Humanities Department of Roma Tre University. She is the local coordinator of the international PriMED (Prevenzione e Interazione dello spazio Trans-Mediterraneo – Prevention and interaction in the trans-Mediterranean space) project and her research interests focus on the spatial practices of religions and monasticism. She has analyzed the nexus between food and culture from many historical perspectives.

We have adapted the organization of Seminars and Conferences in respect of the government health provisions to guarantee strict compliance from all those involved in the academic experience (students, teachers, administrative staff), in an effort to safeguard everyone’s safety.