Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Department of English
Mary Jeanette Moran
My dissertation extends existing work on food in children’s literature to examine the different narratives strategies that texts for young audiences use to connect cuisine, identity, and diversity. Three areas of scholarship—foodways scholarship, children’s literature scholarship, and feminist care ethics work—inform my project. Overall, I am interested in how a variety of genres for young readers use food to represent ethnically diverse identities in complex ways as well as the ethics surrounding those representations, so it is worth delineating here the different concepts and how they are used to make sense of various representations. I theorize three categories of texts, which constitute a spectrum of narrative strategies that range from overly simplistic portrayals of food and culture to nuanced, contextual understandings of cuisine and its role in identity formation. I argue that narrative approaches which portray food in a complex web of identity tend to portray identity and representation in more thoughtful, nuanced, and productive ways.
Lewis, Katy, "Towards a Relational Understanding of Food, Identity, and Diversity in Children’s Literature" (2022). Theses and Dissertations. 1606.
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