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Atlantic World Foodways Conference

2013 September 26
by Paul Mabrey

Atlantic World Foodways:

The Carolina Lowcountry, Africa, Italy, and Spain

An International, Interdisciplinary Conference Featuring Scholars and Chefs

Presented by the Atlantic World Research Network and Quaintance-Weaver

With the Sponsorship of THE FRESH MARKET


January 30-February 2, 2014

The Proximity and O.Henry Hotels, Greensboro, NC

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Elliott University Center

Featured Food Scholars:

David Shields, Professor of English, University of South Carolina (Lowcountry)

Jessica B. Harris, Professor of English, Queen’s College, CUNY (Africa)

John Dickie, Professor of Italian Studies, University College, London (Italy)

Maricel Presilla, President, Gran Cacao; Food Columnist, Miami Herald (Latina)

2013 James Beard Award for Best Cookbook: Gran Cocina Latina

Featured Chefs Sponsored by The Fresh Market:

Sean Brock, Executive Chef, Husk and McCrady’s, Charleston, SC; Husk, Nashville, TN (Lowcountry)

Bon Appetit’s 2012 “Best New Restaurant in America”: Husk, Charleston

Jay Pierce, Executive Chef, Lucky 32 Southern Kitchen, Greensboro and Cary, NC (Piedmont, Lowcountry, and Africa)

Gabriele Grigolon, Executive Chef, OTG Management, New York, NY  (Italy)

Leigh Hesling, Executive Chef, Green Valley Grill Print Works Bistro, Greensboro, NC (Italy)

Timothy Bocholis, Executive Chef, Bistro B, Kernersville, NC  (Spain)

The Atlantic World Research Network, in partnership with Quaintance-Weaver Restaurants and Hotels and The Fresh Market, presents a unique feast of ideas and food—an international and interdisciplinary conference exploring four great transatlantic foodways: Carolina Lowcountry, African, Italian, and Spanish/Latin. Featuring famed food scholars and leading chefs, our conference will bring together inquiring minds and discerning palates as we ask how transatlantic contact combined and transformed old foodways, and how those foodways have transformed us all. Conference activities will include multiple themed tasting dinners and distinctive foodway demonstrations by featured chefs, and our exciting venues will include Greensboro’s Proximity, America’s greenest hotel, which proves that sustainability, beauty, and comfort can all share the same address.

Our conference will explore distinctive but inter-related foodways of the past—Pre-Columbian, Medieval and Renaissance Spanish and Italian, Pan-African, Latin American/Caribbean, Colonial and Antebellum Carolina Lowcountry. We will trace how distinctive food staples and flavors collided and combined with other foodways from around the Atlantic Rim to support whole new hybrid populations and cultures. We also will consider the growth and flourishing of the contemporary food recovery movement, which seeks out heirloom seeds, heritage breeds of livestock, and archival recipes to reproduce the eating experiences of our varied ancestors, and to revive the best (though perhaps to avoid the worst?) of their diets and flavors. In the process, we will consider the achievements, and the limits, of recovery food research and practice, as well as of the locavore and slow food movements that have done so much to make us intelligent, appreciative, conscientious—and sometimes obsessive and anxious—eaters. Paper and panel topics also will include the role of varied foodways in the literary imagination, the media, and the arts; the tensions between ecological and economic food sustainability; the science of food recovery, augmentation and genetic modification; the role of food in shaping historical events and developments; and the politics of food regulation and prohibition.

–The conference will be headquartered at the Elliott University Center, a state-of-the-art facility on the UNCG campus, with sessions also at the Proximity Hotel and at the O.Henry Hotel, and at their attached fine restaurants,Print Works Bistro and The Green Valley Grill. Greensboro is an historic American city which has witnessed the Revolutionary Battle of Guilford Courthouse in 1781, the collapse of the Confederate cabinet in 1865, and the birth of the Sit-In Movement in 1960.

For contact, please call 336-334-4695 or email

For rates and registration beginning in September, 2013, please visit

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