35.1 | Carla Kay

Remembering Eating: Cultural Memory and Identity Formation in Three Culinary Memoirs of the Middle East

This paper examines three culinary memoirs of the Middle East from the past twenty years and highlights them as alternative media for transcultural identification and memory formation. By analyzing how authors align recipes, food memories, and personal narratives; and referencing scholarship on food, memory, and semiotics, I find that in each text, food is mechanized as a narrative space in which authors and readers can identify with pasts, places, cultures, and selves. Drawing from these analyses, I conclude that these culinary memoirs demonstrate the potential for food in literary and political-cultural discourses as transcultural movement continues to increase globally.