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Cookbooks, Culinary Arts, Culinary History : Home

Discover campus and community resources for celebrating and examining foodways through cookbooks and other food research and writing.

Welcome! There is a place for you at this table.

table service, photoThis research guide to Cookbooks, Culinary Arts and Culinary History identifies library, campus, and community resources that speak to interdisciplinary, food studies research.

Food studies research examines topics that may intersect with any of the following contexts:

  • Ethnic and Regional Cooking; Traditions and Celebrations
  • Ethnographies, Social Identities
  • Food Processing, Food Technology, and Food Preparation
  • Food and Folk Medicine
  • Food Systems, Access, Sovereignty
  • Gender Roles, Gender Studies
  • Household Maintenance and Etiquette
  • Nutrition, Dietary Practices, Health Food Movements
  • Social and Community Histories

Cookbooks and Cookbook Collections

Cookbooks can, as popular media, inform our understanding of culinary art and science and how these evolve over time. It is for this knowledge that cookbook collections have become engaging resources within academic libraries--particularly for researchers who seek to understand how wartime rationing or innovations in food preservation technologies or access to particular ingredients, among myriad other topics, have changed the landscape of our kitchens.

Food for Thought, Statement about cookbooks as historical artifacts: Cookbooks are a product of complicated people. When viewed as historical documents, cookbooks can provide insights about a time-period, a place, a momentous event or movement, or a cultural or social identity. It is important to reflect and to recognize that we may find content—be it imagery, use of language, or other—that we find inappropriate. We encourage you to use that information constructively as you review and generate your analysis of selected cookbooks.

Steenbock Librarian

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Karen Dunn
Steenbock Library;
Science & Engineering Libraries (SEL)

I am happy to schedule consultations!