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Schedule

We look forward to seeing you at the 2024 conference. All in-person panels, workshops, and roundtables will be live streamed and all virtual panels, workshops, and roundtables will be projected in a room at the conference location: Boston University. 



Here's also a link to a downloadable version of the schedule.


This version of the schedule includes more detailed descriptions of the panels, workshops, and roundtables. 

Please note that all in-person events, unless specifically noted otherwise, will be livestreamed for folks that have registered for the virtual conference. All registered conference participants will receive a list of the zoom links. The panels in which all the presenters are presenting in virtual form will be livecast into a physical room at the conference. 


Saturday April 27

8:45-9:15am

Breakfast & Welcome 

Room #124

Presentation and catering by Diesel Cafe's Jennifer Park

Opening remarks from Alex D. Ketchum and Megan J. Elias

  

9:30-11:00am

The Radical Potential of Queer Politics in Food Media Roundtable

Room #124 th

Alma Avalle, Jenny Dorsey, Max Falkowitz, Jaya Saxena, Chala June, and Leo Kirts

What are the queer politics of food? This roundtable discussion explores the role of food media as a site of liberatory queer politics for media workers and in media narratives. As writers, creators and researchers, we critically engage with the radical potential of food politics in explicit terms of international class solidarity, racial justice, abolition and queer liberation.

Currently, mainstream publications uphold the status quo twofold: by internally privileging media executives over media workers through layoffs and union-busting, and externally by publishing stories that promote rainbow-washed neoliberal consumerism as the climate hurdles toward collapse. It’s not enough to declare that “food is political” or take part in “queering food” when it comes at a cost to workers, animals and the environment. Likewise, it’s not enough to boast “diverse hires” without dismantling social hierarchies that stifle and marginalize those hired.

Together, we’ll discuss concrete alternatives to media’s performative remediations and imagine new frameworks that intersect with social justice movements across race, class, gender and climate. As LGBTQ+ food media workers, we consider how we can leverage our creative power in this industry to divest from oppressive political systems of occupation, white supremacy, capitalism, and cisheteropatriarchy.

 

Queer Food and Fundraising as Resistance Workshop

Room #131

Liz Alpern

Queer chefs, farmers and organizers have long used food as a tool for political resistance, through fundraising, pay-what-you-can meals, meals for protesters and so much more. We'll explore specific examples of how and when food has been used as a tool for political activism in the past and spend time workshopping the ways in which we might use food as a tool in our own personal resistance work today.

 

Rural Queer Pop-ups

Virtual speakers, physically projected in Room #122

M. Eliatamby-O’Brien, Michael Johnson, and Griff Tester

In this panel, three queer scholars and community organizers based in rural central Washington discuss pop-up restaurant projects we organize with and for our LGBTQ2IA+ / SOGIE community. In addition to sharing stories, photos, zines, and culinary notes, panelist will place our rural queer pop-up project in conversation with other food-centered community projects such as New York-based Black Trans Liberation Kitchen or Wine Wednesdays, a longstanding queer potluck tradition created by Atlanta’s lesbian community. We consider how our situatedness in a rural context shapes the framing and experience of our pop-ups differently from these and other urban models. Stillwagon and Ghaziani (2019) identify how pop-ups expand geographic imaginations as they provide spaces for queer and trans people to construct contingent community-building opportunities and sites of pleasure and consumption in contrast to existing spaces that may be inaccessible, exclusive, or discriminatory. Rather than focus on the spatial- or temporal fixity of pop-ups, this panel explores how in rural spaces, pop-ups serve as contingent counter-publics, but ones where both their development (such as through menu creation or queer organizing) and subsequent reflective engagements (through social media conversations and zine creations) render the pop-up as an ongoing site of community discourse.

 

11:15am-12:45pm

 

Teaching Queer Food at a University Level Roundtable

Room #124

Javonne Alonzo, Gabrielle Lenart, and Ashley Scheideberg

Through our lived experiences, perspectives, research, and insights, we’ve designed a comprehensive syllabus that imagines a queer food curriculum. Inspired by our time in an interdisciplinary Master's Food Studies program, we have crafted a dynamic curriculum that reflects the robustness of queer food culture in today’s political, social, and cultural landscape. This curriculum aims to illuminate the prominence of queer culture in history, contemporary food media, and policy, as well as celebrate intersectional queer food and social identities. We acknowledge that this paper will only scratch the surface of what might be considered Queer Food Studies. The proposed curriculum will critically examine the following objectives within a framework of resilience. Understanding Societal Significance: Delving into the historical dimensions, this research aims to comprehensively understand the societal significance of queer culture within the food world. Media, Movements, and Policy Integration: Illustrating the indispensable role of queer food within media, movements, and policy, this curriculum will examine the critical impact of a self-organized queer food community. Community Resilience and Care: Queer food extends beyond its culinary contributions, generating profound implications for community resilience and care. Queer food is a form of communal sustenance and support. 

 

DIQ: Do It Queer Bean-to-Bar Craft Chocolate Making Workshop

Room #131

Morgan Roddy

Do It Queer (DIQ) has been my silent motto as I challenge myself, my community, and my industry to learn more about the bean-to-bar chocolate making process, to ask questions of food and economic justice, and to explore our own perceptions of what we think is "good" chocolate. I will be holding a small-scale bean-to-bar chocolate making workshop during which I will take participants through the multi-step process to result in a finished 60% chocolate that can be tasted on-site. (I will need to have a day ahead to prep for getting the ingredients in the grinder so that it can be ready on the second day for tasting.) During the workshop, I will engage with participants about how cocoa beans are sourced and discuss other cocoa and chocolate-related questions. I intend to share how being a queer business woman has also resulted in both barriers and opportunities for my business. Chocolate is a great lens through which discussions of food justice, trends, culture, and economics can be held as chocolate is a disarming substance that many people come to with some knowledge and familiarity with but are usually curious and open to learning more.

 

Showing and Telling: Queer Food Representations

Virtual- projected in Room #122

Panelists: Ursula Kania, Alkım Kutlu, and Diana Farin Molina

Ursula Kania

Community, cake and political correctness - a short history of LGBTQIA+ cookbooks in Germany 

Even though we have arguably entered the digital age, printed cookbooks are still hugely popular. Like all media, cookbooks are rich cultural artefacts, providing insights into various aspects of the society in which they are produced. Focusing on seven LGBTQIA+ cookbooks by German authors, published between 1996 (Schulze & Bidner) and 2023 (Behr & Behr), this paper will explore how queer identities are conveyed and (re)negotiated in these culinary texts, drawing on concepts and analytic tools from critical discourse analysis, culinary linguistics, and queer theory. Apart from identifying changes over time (e.g., regarding dominant discourses/themes, use of images, and terminology for (self-)identification), findings will be compared with studies on English-language publications (e.g., Zimmermann, 2008) in order to highlight similarities as well as differences between different cultural contexts. 

Alkım Kutlu

Food television, one of the most established forms of food media, has dominated TV sets and streaming devices over the past eighty years. Scholars have noted how food television derived from a pedagogic purpose for women and evolved into entertainment, maintaining some gendered conventions, especially regarding care and domestic labor (Collins 2009; Oren 2023). Considering the impact and reflection of television on culture and society, looking at how cooking shows perpetuate or challenge conventions–and, by extension, gender roles–is instrumental.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

In this paper, I will focus on Netflix’s Nailed It!, particularly how it subverts competitive cooking show conventions. Considering competitive cooking show conventions in their historical context in television studies as connected to masculinity, authority, and anti-domestic cooking, I will identify Nailed It! as a queer competitive cooking show (Oren 2013; Philips 2016). Here, I will draw on the definition of “queer” as a verb to indicate the disruption of normalized texts and practices, referring to how queering the competitive cooking show allows for destabilizing the hegemonic values embedded within the genre. In Nailed It!, I will consider humor, focusing on the series' host, comedian Nicole Byer, as the main queering factor. I will analyze Byer’s interactions with her fellow judge, renowned pastry chef Jacques Torres, the guest judges, contestants, and crew members, as well as refer to the show's format and its production design. Identifying the different types of humor within this show, I will conclude that Nailed It! belongs in a roster of recent cooking shows that can be labeled queer food television, disturbing the gendered conventions and values that have been established within the genre.


Diana Farin Molina

The field of literary studies has long overlooked a dimension of orality constituted by the literary representation of food and foodways, which is particularly notable in the study of African American literature. Like Black music, the prevalence of Black food cultures in literature suggests similar critical attention should be spent on food. Music and food are modes of Black aesthetic expression that inform literary approaches and help us consider textual and extratextual paradigms of Black life. Many the writers of the African American Women’s Literary Renaissance used food as a trope to explore possibilities for liberation, solidarity, pleasure, and the formation of alternative worlds. This paper will focus on the prose writings of Audre Lorde, who uses food as an analytic for considering the political and social implications of queer women’s relationships to their bodies. Specifically, I contend that food is an analytic Lorde uses to explore the development of her queer womanhood. I argue that cooking acts like “kneading” the margarine packing in “Uses of the Erotic” and “grinding” garlic and herbs in Zami exemplify merged conceptual and sensual modes of knowledge; thus, they are essential to analyzing the political vitality that she theorizes as “the erotic as power.” What insights might we discover if literary scholars consider both sides of the tongue—language and sensuality—when we apply Lorde’s theories to contemporary practices of liberation?

 

12:45-1:45pm LUNCH

 

1:45-3:15pm

 

Health, HIV/AIDS, and Nourishing Wellbeing

Room #124

Danielle Kydd, Elena Kalodner-Martin, Jo Michael Rezes, Danielle Rousseau


Danielle Kydd

This presentation explores how the 2SLGBTQ+ (also referred to as “queer”) community in Canada experiences food insecurity. Through interviews with employees of 2SLGBTQ+ organisations from across Canada, my research finds the following central themes within 2SLGBTQ+ food insecurity: 1) employment discrimination and workforce attainment levels; 2) familial rejection; 3) body dysmorphia; and 4) a lack of culturally competent and affirming food bank programmes. This research accepts Canada as a liberal welfare regime. As such, food insecurity solutions are seated within Canada’s current economic structure. Ultimately, this paper explores existing queer and trans-led food security programmes and proposes additional 2SLGBTQ+ affirming food provision programmes.

Elena Kalodner-Martin

Title: “Get Fat, Don’t Die”: AIDS Activism and Food as Medicine 

Using food as a form of medicine has a long history in food and culinary studies. Particularly in queer communities, where discrimination in institutional healthcare settings is common (Casey et al., 2019) and nutritional disparities are well-documented (Ferrero et al., 2023), food often represents agency, safety, and community-oriented resistance.

To explore how these values manifest, this paper offers a case study from Diseased Pariah News, a 1990s zine “by and for HIV+ gay men and their lovers” (DPN, 1991). To help counter some of the common symptoms of HIV/AIDS, the DPN editors began “Get Fat, Don’t Die!,” a cooking column in which readers could submit high-fat recipes for other individuals struggling with severe malnutrition and caloric deficiencies (Kauffman, 2021). The editors also included information about how to shop for “AIDS-friendly foods” on food stamps, ways to counteract the taste perversions caused by common antiviral medications, and ideas for home remedies to symptoms that made cooking—and eating—difficult. Grounded in examples from this publication, this paper explores how queer food and cooking, as well as the communication practices that surround it, is a tool for improving healthcare outcomes and resisting silencing and discrimination, both inside and outside the clinic.


Jo Michael Rezes

Tainted with AIDS: Viral Consumption of Food, F*ggots, & Foreigners

Urban legends (like the "Hold the Mayo" myth) around HIV/AIDS center anonymous, disgruntled (often queer and nonwhite) workers masturbating into the food of unsuspecting patrons. I theorize through the history of rumor to formulate that race and queerness perform through proximities to taste in fast food culture, the displacement of domesticity outside the home, and HIV/AIDS misinformation which circulated in Black American communities around the time that the myth comes into being. Ejaculation into food becomes presumed to be a Black, queer, and AIDS-ridden act of revenge based on a culture of myth. 

This paper contends with how HIV/AIDS is rumored to be injected into sweet food objects by (foreign) workers in the form of blood, spit, or semen during international production and then circulated on global food markets. With three primary case studies —Coca Cola & Pepsi, Bananas, and Cadbury Eggs— I work through internet archives (WhatsApp, Twitter, and Facebook) to uncover how urban legends are crafted from points of phobic ideologies and sensationalized into media forms such as memes, fear-mongering news stories, and clickbait headlines. Beyond the sheer parallel histories of food marketing and public discourses around HIV/AIDS, I argue that consumers believe they can taste, smell, or see AIDS within tainted food. Sensations are performed through the figures of the “foreign worker” and/or the “faggots”  paired in the rumors narrativized online. 

Associations of contamination begin to seep into media byproducts with the fluctuating success of the unfortunately named Ayds Diet Plan from late-1980s, and into the 2000s with Pepsi (by way of Coca-Cola’s foreign aid policies and labor strategies around the AIDS crisis circa 2002 until 2006) and Cadbury Eggs (a commercial for the company’s 20th anniversary featuring an interracial gay couple), which infects public perception of the food products on a global scale. The threat of contamination exists within the public and viral internet cultures even though the World Health Organization has stated clearly that HIV cannot be transmitted by water or food.  Regardless, audiences perform their fear of contamination online, weaving humor into fears that one could contract HIV from a tainted treat in their supermarket or voicing genuine concerns of sharing candy with an HIV+ neighbor.  Through circulated jokes and questions of personal health, “taste of AIDS” haunts aesthetic performances of these food objects regardless of the virus’s presence or medical ability to infect through food consumption.

Danielle Rousseau

Nourishing Wellbeing: Food Spaces as Pathways to Resilience Building and Transformation

Food spaces can constitute strength-based pathways to resilience building and transformation. This paper will utilize two food justice case studies to explore the ways in which food can nourish inclusion, holistic wellbeing, resilience building, and transformation. While traditionally food spaces can reinforce power difference and heteropatriarchal ideas, this work will explore the potential for healing and radical empathy within such spaces. This interdisciplinary perspective will utilize a portfolio model of resilience to explore the transformative power of food environments to encourage individual and collective wellbeing and transformation. One case will explore Momentum Café and their holistic model supporting justice-impacted youth. The second will profile Life Alive, a plant-based restaurant chain fostering inclusion and holistic wellbeing. A trauma-informed lens will be used to explore the case studies and consider the question of how food justice can transform food systems to be more inclusive, strength-based, and trauma-informed. 

 

Agriculture and Queerness on the Land

Room #131

Taylor Hartson and Tristian Lee

Taylor Hartson

Social identities like gender and sexuality shape the ways that farmers engage in agricultural networks, resources, and communities. However, marginalized gender identities and sexualities are often rendered invisible in sustainable agriculture, making it difficult to properly and formally allocate resources and support.

Currently, there is limited research on how queer farmers experience and engage with agricultural systems, but what research does exist has shown that queer farmers adopt particular ecological values, farming practices, and strategies for resistance and coping with homophobia and transphobia (Leslie 2017; Wypler 2019; Hoffelmeyer 2021).

This ongoing project aims to collect seventy-five interviews with queer farmers in the Midwest and to conduct ethnographic observations on queer-run farms. From the fifty-five interviews completed to-date, I find that queer farmers engage in embodied, emotional, and relational practices in their farmwork that serve as identity-forming and resistance-based projects within their situated geographic contexts. Farming is not simply a career for these individuals, but rather a process through which queer identity, community, and resistance are created and centered. Given the larger influence these agricultural projects have than just transforming food systems, these approaches require rethinking the resources offered to farmers and the networks through which information is exchanged. 

Tristian Lee

Urban agriculture is facing renewed interest in the global north. While it has often been present in some form, there is growing interest from researchers, practitioners, and city residents about urban agriculture’s potential for social change. I join a growing voice of scholars that propose that urban agriculture’s contributions to food sovereignty and food security are modest. Instead, I argue that urban agriculture boasts a number of emergent social benefits that prove to be exciting for all UA enthusiasts. My research project “Urban Agriculture Can’t Feed Cities:So, What Can It Do for Us?” examines the growing presence of queer youth in urban agricultural spaces and their place in changing the food system. This project stems from 14 weeks of fieldwork conducted throughout the island of Montreal during the summer of 2023. Initial findings revolve around how young urban ag practitioners understand their work as community and environmental care, the diversification of representation in urban agriculture, and the navigation of impermanence. 


Working it: Food, Labor and Identity

Virtual- projected in Room #122

Evelyn Lambeth, Faith Saeerah, Tobias Diewald, Stefan Wahlen, Juliane Yildiz

 

Evelyn Lambeth

“Maps of Tassie” and Queer Food Theories, A Tasmanian Case Study- Queer is a widely used term, which makes its meaning when applied to food difficult to understand. Is it simply food covered in rainbows? Or food cooked by someone that does not identify as cis heterosexual? Is a vegan cookie queer because it excludes use animal products? With these questions in mind, this paper critically examines the slang use of the phrase ‘Map of Tasmania’ when it is applied to food. The shape of the small southern Australian island resembles an upside-down triangle and is often related to a woman’s pubic region. The phrase is used across a wide range of public settings because it is a sly way to discuss seemingly taboo concepts without reproach. Amanda Palmer, an American singer, produced a song about the concept when she visited Tasmania alongside a provocative music video with all sorts of colourfully depicted ‘Maps of Tasmania.’  During Pride month and other LGBTQIA+ events, ‘Map of Tassie’ cookies are adorned in bright colourful sprinkles. A wild game meat butchering company recently made a ‘Map of Tassie’ Wallaby Fur G-string to utilize every part of the animal.  Are these examples queer because they are hypersexualized, rainbow, or using subaltern species in mainstream settings? The line between disrupting normal food practices and monetizing a minority population seems quite blurred. This paper demonstrates that queerness cannot be limited to the final product but must be considered within every step of the food process to fully embrace the ambitions of the subaltern theory. 


Faith Saeerah

“Culinary Masculinities” and “Foodie Femininities”: The persistence of cisheteronormativity in domestic foodwork studies. 

Domestic foodwork is often studied to better understand the intersections between food, gender, and power within the home and family. While the act of foodwork contributes to the construction of gender and sexuality, normative understandings of gender and sexuality additionally influence the way that foodwork is organized and understood. Unfortunately, assumptions of heterosexual and cisgender embodiment and identity can reify these normative understandings within this production of knowledge. This paper aims to uncover how knowledge is produced in foodwork studies by identifying the implicit assumptions that shape existing scholarship and the ways scholars attempt to resist these assumptions. 39 foodwork studies were reviewed with attention to the ways scholars utilize or assume conceptions of gender and sexuality to describe foodwork roles and actions. I will discuss how cisheteronormativity is embedded in foodwork studies in both how research participants are selected and how they are described in relation to each other. I also outline how masculinities and femininities are used to describe foodwork in ways that contribute to reifying cisheteronormativity. Lastly, I highlight how scholars have recognized and criticized the limitations of binary gendered frameworks in addition to the ways they attempt to shift beyond the limitations of gendered discourse.  

Tobias Diewald, Stefan Wahlen, Juliane Yildiz

Doing food – doing (trans) gender: considering queer food life courses 

Abstract: We explore the role of food and eating habits in shaping gender distinctions through empirically investigating the gender and food-related socialization of transgender individuals. We conceptualize the interplay between food and gender socialization as an ongoing, dynamic process throughout the life course. To delve into the food habits of transgender individuals, we conducted four biographical interviews. The empirical results reveal that transgender individuals align their behaviors with societal notions of their lived gender. In the process of primary socialization within the family, the sex assigned at birth influences the adaption of socially normed rules governing gender and eating habits.

As individuals transition to the opposite gender, food becomes a tool for forming a body that aligns with societal ideals of femininity or masculinity. Consequently, food serves as a means of expressing conformity to prevailing gender norms. From these initial insights, we identify potential avenues for future research on transgender food cultures. Notably, aspects such as the congruence between inner and outer realities and the role of the body in shaping food habits may warrant further attention. Additionally, future food research could also include non-binary individuals.

 

3:30-5:00pm

 

Potlucks and Food Sharing for Community Building and Resistance

Room #124

Justin Howard, Laurel Oberstadt-Petrik, Yamuna Sangarasivam

Justin Howard

For many years, queer people have had a challenging time relating to their family or peers, craving to make meaningful relationships with people like us. We often go to extremes to make these connections like bars or hook-ups, which can be dangerous and unfulfilling. However, this self-discovery can be nurtured rather than exploited, and I argue that this can be found in the ritual performance of potluck. The queer potluck has historically been the central hub of community formation, providing a space where all its participants can collaborate with each other without immediate risk. The multi-dished meal is an environment where everyone shares their resources in a space built around trust and cooperation while also making sure everyone is fed. Through an extensive ethnography of the Queer Men of the Berkshires, I have observed that potluck’s mutual aid is central to creating a different form of family. As this rural queer community holds monthly potlucks, they share cultural values in an intimate setting, assuring participants that they are not alone in this world.  

Laurel Oberstadt-Petrik

In the original Greek the word liturgy means simply: the work of the people. What is the work of queer folks? Cathy J. Cohen has argued that queerness does not inherently provoke political action, but that the possibility for “radical potential…found in the idea of queerness” might be located in the creation of a “space in opposition to dominant norms, a space where transformational political work can begin” (Cohen 1997). In my paper I will argue that the space we create in queer potlucks holds the ability to become a transformational space for community and activism through the ritual of eating together. I will draw upon Eucharistic theology, queer studies, and my own experiences hosting queer potlucks and attending dinner church in order to make this claim. In doing so, I hope to move towards queering the theology of food and rewriting and retelling the ways in which queers, Christians, and queer Christians engage in eating practices as the work of the people. 


Yamuna Sangarasivam

Cooking and eating are modes of creating and curating sociality and affection that disrupts North American/Euro-centric, patriarchal, heteronormative, colonial constructs of Asian diasporic identity formations. Mobilizing, what Gayatri Gopinath (2005, 2018) calls, a queer reading practice, my work grapples with unruly methodological possibilities to understand food as a queer archive of transnational feminist aesthetics and epistemologies. This paper invites us into a methodology of speculative ethnography to join in solidarity with queer ontologies and epistemologies to decolonize our relationships with food and to witness our ecological relationships with other living beings. This is an experimental practice of witnessing food as affective infrastructure, as nourishing transmigrations, as unruly border crossings into queer ways of knowing and ways of being: where we might experience food as a portal, a gateway, an energetic force for transformation, where food becomes a place of encounter, and where the politics of making and sharing food becomes a practice of worldmaking. Queer culinary transmigrations carry a political valence allowing people to divest from colonizing binary norms by making conscious choices to create culinary collectives, rituals, aesthetics, and resurgent commitments to ethical practices that allow us to nourish a form of resistance and renewal.

 

From Grubs to Pie to Tea and Coffee, Queering Food Representations and Political Affordances

Room #131

Claire Bunschoten, Anna A Elliott, Khori Eubanks, Laura Kitchings

Claire Bunschoten

“At Least it Was a Fruit Pie”: The Material and Political Affordances of Pieing

On October 14, 1977, the gay rights activist Thom Higgins pushed a banana cream pie into the face of American singer and outspoken anti-gay activist Anita Bryant. The camera tightly frames Bryant’s face as she professes the evils of homosexuality live on NBC when the pie appears suddenly in frame. A second later, doused in cream and custard, Bryant wipes pie crust off her face. The camera zooms out and swings to Higgins, hands up in the air, as Bryant quips from off camera: “Well, at least it was a fruit pie.” 

Higgins’s politically laden pieing was one of the first to be captured on camera. While pie fights and pieing were popular fixtures of silent film comedies, they took on a political purpose in the hands of activists like Higgins in the 1970s. The material forms of these political pies—most often a whipped cream covered custard pie—afford their wielders and wearers a great spectacle of mess. This paper investigates the material and political affordances of pieing as “visual non-sequitur” and camp through the pieing of Anita Bryant and stills from the 2014 performance art piece “Fruit Pie: Self-Portrait as Anita Bryant” by artist Logan Bellew.

Anna A Elliott 

“Deaccessioned Because Sticky: Faux Food in Decorative Arts Museums”

In this paper, I investigate the life of faux food in American decorative arts museums. Combining my practice as an artist, a scholar, and a queer-artist-scholar, I explore the life of  hand-made things that live parasitically upon, around, and beside fine antique furniture. Along with the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley and the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts, I focus on research done at Winterthur Museum and Gardens, where I investigated the legacy of faux food and the mostly female volunteers who created it. My techniques included archival research, interviews, connoisseurship, and investigating the material culture of the sculpture-like food objects. These objects, which play the roles of fake food inside fake homes, intersect with nostalgia for an imagined USA and the collectors’ interests of the antique market. I argue that the high camp of faux food in the decorative arts is a queer imaginative experience. In some cases this is a joyful creative process; in other cases, it is a reification of ahistorical, racist, sexist narratives. Through faux food, I interrogate the gendered politics of public performances of history.

Khori Eubanks

If gender is a social construct, then eating patterns based on gendered rules can be evolved and constructed to our social needs. I will argue that the queering of the diet can be a tool to  improve our relationships with food through intuitive eating and the decolonization of our diets. I will also clarify that usage of the term queer in this context relates not only to gender-queer (non-heterosexual/non-cisgendered), but also that outside of the ordinary and thus less conventional. The subversion and redefining of food-ways in any format is inherently queer because one is embracing a wide spectrum of radical ideals. My paper focuses on 3 main aspects to queering the diet. The first highlighting extensive benefits of “eating the rainbow” supported through the works of The Brainbow Blueprint and plant based diets. The second focuses on tea as the key and antithesis to coffee as a symbol of capitalism and labor oppression. And lastly mushrooms and mycology to simultaneously combat mycophobia and homophobia through connections and filtrations that encourage growth and diversity across spectrums. 

Laura Kitchings

“Slimy but Satisfying”: Eating Grubs as Queer-Coded Foodway in Disney’s The Lion King Universe

Gael Sweeny’s chapter in Diversity in Disney Films: Critical Essays on Race Ethnicity, Gender, Sexuality, and Disability (2013) discusses the queer-coding of the characters Timon and Pumbaa,  in animated film The Lion King (1994), the Broadway musical The Lion King (1997), and the animated television series The Lion King’s Timon and Pumbaa (1995-1999). In these works, and other works taking place the a heteronormative universe, Timon and Pumbaa, later joined by an adopted nephew, live together and follow a food-way focused on eating grubs (foraged plants and bugs). This presentation focuses on films and television shows taking place in this universe, including The Lion King 2: Simba’s Pride (1998) and The Lion Guard (2015-2019), where Timon and Pumbaa take an active role in raising the community’s young animals. Many of the younger animals initially show disgust at Timon and Pumbaa’s grub eating, however, they soon come to respect the foodway. In insisting on respect for their foodway, Timon and Pumbaa are insisting on respect for publicly living in a same-gender headed household. 

 

Table Manners: Queer Food Communities

Virtual- projected in Room #122

Ariana Gunderson, Bonnie J. Morris, Chris Aino Pihlak, and Merin Oleschuk

Ariana Gunderson and co-authors

SFA means Safe For All: Foodwork as Queer Householding in a Midwestern Co-op

Masking tape allergen labels on leftovers; produce from our friends’ farms; being a good host. These are the signs of queer food practice in our co-op home. 

The co-authors of this paper, residents of a 12-person co-operative house in Indiana, share the responsibilities of foodwork with distributed food procurement chores, a common food budget, shared kitchen space, and daily house dinners. We facilitate biannual discussions about food values and norms, and we know sharing food is both how we bond, and how we live our values as a household.

In 2023-2024, we conducted a sixth-month collaborative research project on queer food in our own lives, exploring what queer food is and how queerness shows up in our kitchen through monthly discussions and art activities, the circulation of texts and media, and a Queer Dinner Party.

As a non-normative household, we argue our foodwork is a form of queer kinmaking. Every house member contributes to our food procurement and preparation processes as they are able, and we eat together daily. Food is at the center of our home, and key to how we build a kin network of 12 unrelated co-habitants, queering and subverting household structure norms. 

Bonnie J. Morris

I devoted almost thirty-five years, from age twenty to fifty-four, working at as many women’s festivals as possible, and ate hundreds of meals in the unique dining ambiance of topless lesbian gatherings--taking notes. Those summertime institutions continued the 1970s subculture of lesbian potlucks and collectives in mapping out sustainable approaches to cooking for 8,000. For the food crews, planning wasn’t easy, considering the contentious attitudes toward nutrition, dieting and “kitchen work” in the land of amazon separatists (including politically active vegans and vegetarians.) To strike a balance, cuisine in the early years of festival culture was basic: potatoes with yogurt dip served from a rain barrel, cabbage strips in tahini sauce. Feminist re-naming was also critical aspect of festival cuisine: one snack available for purchase, circa 1981, was popcorn—sold in brown paper bags, seasoned with yeast, as “Mamacorn.”

It took muscle, money, and creative brainpower to feed thousands of hungry women and kids; to feed work crew women coming off physically demanding ten-hour shifts. As women’s music festivals gained popularity and size across the United States, from the mid-1970s onward, each production staff developed a kitchen strategy according to venue and budget. This paper explores it all.

Chris Aino Pihlak

Food for the Meeting, Food for the Soul: The Potlucks and Parties of 20th-Century Trans Feminine Social Groups

From the 1960s on, overwhelmingly white and often closeted trans feminine people across the Anglosphere connected across a blooming network of subcultural institutions. Sororities, periodicals, social-groups, and conferences were liminal spaces that provided trans feminine intimacy and sisterhood. At in-person events, trans femmes and allies bonded over their shared femininity, lived experiences, and of course: food and drinks. From the Tiffany’s Club Boston clambakes, birthday cakes eaten ‘en femme’ to celebrate one’s femme-self, and the frequent boozy parties done after official club business, trans feminine gatherings provided multi-faceted nourishment to attendees. I will speak to three of these articulations in my talk. First, the geographic and gendered textures of social-group potlucks which often included the presence and labour of non-trans wives. Secondly, the affective nourishment provided by these liminal trans femme spaces.  Finally, how drinking carried out after club-meetings frequently destabilized the oftentimes sex-negative, prim codes of subcultural etiquette. My talk will add texture to what it was like to exist in these spaces along with making visible the long herstories of bonding over food and drink within trans femme subcultures.   

Merin Oleschuk

Living alone is an increasingly prominent aspect of modern life and impacts peoples’ food practices in varied ways, particularly for queer people, who are more likely to live alone according to some research. We are interested in the ways these folks connect foodwork (e.g., cooking, eating, grocery shopping) to their queer identities. We conducted qualitative interviews and photovoice projects with 26 queer participants with diverse identities (e.g., gender, age, race) as part of a larger study examining foodwork among people who live alone. Preliminary findings suggest three themes. Firstly, food emerges as a powerful expression of self, where culinary practices and preferences resonate with the fluidity and expansiveness of queer identities. Secondly, food acts as a tool for building community, fostering connections, and reinforcing shared experiences among some queer folks. Lastly, this research highlights the nuanced relationship between bodies, health, and food for queer people with attention to how living alone facilitates reflection about how bodies are viewed in both queer cultures and society broadly. The results from this analysis draw attention to the unique roles that food plays in the lives of queer folks living alone, addressing challenges and celebrating the joys of shared experiences and connection.  


After Hours

A Queer Wine Night Out Event - This event, curated by Marie-Louise Friedland, will be in-person only at Wild Child in Somerville and will require separate registration. Register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/queer-food-conference-mixer-tickets-830580607957?aff=oddtdtcreator

 

Sunday April 28

 

8:45-9:15am

 

Breakfast & Welcome

Room #124

Presentation and catering by Diesel Cafe

Opening remarks from Megan J. Elias and Alex D. Ketchum

 

9:30-11:00am

 

Alone and Together: Making Community Through Cooking and Eating

Room #124

Sasha DuBose, Theresa N. Kenney, and Priyanka Rajagopalan

Sasha DuBose

Feeding Radical Love: Commensality’s Role in Queer Movement Building

This paper will explore queerness as a political identity and how food is an essential part of radical love and community care. The “meat” of this piece will be oral histories conducted with queer organizers of color. 

Organizing encapsulates many things, whether it’s food centric or not, but I notice that commensality plays a large role in queer politics and radical love.

I will use the lived experiences of my interviewees as a framework to delve into the deeper histories of queer politics, food, and identity. Contextualizing my analysis within reflections on personal experiences, I want to argue that commensality is not only rejuvenating, but an essential tool for queer community building and political action.

Theresa N. Kenney

In this paper, I take a Filipinx food studies approach to explore sourness in two interconnected senses: a disidentification affect and a diasporic foodway. Drawing on Filipina food writer Doreen Fernandez's essay “Why Sinigang?” and scholarship on gastropoetics, I propose “Sour Peminisms” as a way to describe Filipinx lifeways in response to racialization in the diaspora. I turn to selections from singer-songwriter Olivia Rodrigo's 2021 album Sour to demonstrate the queer resonances of sour Filipinx affect and sour geographies across imperial and colonial histories and pathways. I conclude by attempting to draw sour solidarities between what I describe as Sour Asian Diasporas, linking together a number of sour dispositions and foodways, such as movements to use diasporic Vietnamese non-binary pronouns: chị + anh = chanh, meaning lemon.


Priyanka Rajagopalan

Queer Food Cultures of India

The question of, “What does food have to do with queerness?” has been probed globally by researchers and scholars in food studies and cultural anthropology and has given rise to ideas such as food symbology, gendered roles in food preparation, and food as a vehicle to establish kinship in queer spaces and communities. In the Indian subcontinent, however, such research is limited and is impeded by various factors such as societal stigma and political hurdles. This study aims to establish a concrete correlation between queerness and food culture in India by surveying queer individuals and communities and analyzing their relationships with food. The survey posits that queer people have inherently unique experiences of food that are complicated by factors such as economic mobility, social status by virtue of caste, and limited access to resources such as housing and education. The interplay between these various factors gives rise to distinct manifestations of queer food culture, especially through performance art and visual identities in media. Using this analysis, the larger goal of this paper is to advocate for a focused approach to studying queer food cultures in India as their own viable method of inquiry into Indian society.


 

On Memory and Remembering

Room #131

John Birdsall, Patrizia Gentile, Joshua I. Lopez, Melissa Montanari

John Birdsall

Gen and Lou and the Queer Food Ghosts

Genevieve Ann Callahan and Louvica Faith Richardson—Gen and Lou—are unknown today, but in the 1930s at Sunset magazine they pioneered the modern form of travel food journalism. After leaving Sunset around 1940 (I believe they were pressured to leave because for their sexuality), they became leaders in the Home Economics profession—one of the only avenues for women pursuing newspaper and magazine journalism. Gen and Lou worked and lived together for 55 years, until the early 1980s, and they were never public about their relationship. Their story reveals the complicated lives of lesbians in the mid-twentieth century, but also gets at the difficulty of telling queer food stories of the past, trying to read clues in the shadows.

Patrizia Gentile

Queer Memory, Garages, and Home Winemaking: A Montreal Archive

Centering a 2015 homemade audio video and several narrative accounts of making wine with my father, Giuseppe Gentile, this paper will offer a queer archiving of memory, winemaking, and (un)belonging. I started helping my father make homemade wine in our home garage located in the east end working class neighborhood of St. Leonard around the age of 5. Emigrating from Sicily to Montreal in 1964, my father was a construction worker who later started a landscaping business, and my mother was a seamstress. Every September, the Montreal Italian immigrant scene included two food culture activities designed to anchor gendered labour and tropes from the so-called ‘old country’: canning tomato sauce and winemaking.

Drawing on Lauren Fournier’s Autotheory as Feminist Practice In Art, Writing and Critisism and Martin F. Manalansan’s conceptualization of the queer migrant archives as ‘stuff’ formed through “mess, clutter, and muddled entanglements,” this paper will recount my queer (lesbian) memory of making wine with my father as a fractured archive of intimacy and what I call ‘cultural failure.’ This failure refers to the gaps, holes, and missing ‘knowledge’ between me, my father, winemaking, and my queerness.  In this fractured archive of intimacy, wine and winemaking become citations of belonging, failure, and cultural memory.

Joshua I. Lopez

"Listening to LGBTQ Food Memories"

In this paper presentation I share the food-centered oral history research I recorded with LGBTQ individuals from El Paso, Texas. I present themes that emerge from across the interviews, and I reflect on how the narrators have shaped my understanding of queer food. This oral history project began when I first studied lesbian and gay Chicanx literatures. I became curious by their gastronarratives that cropped up in their works of fiction, poetry, and memoir. I continue to pursue this curiosity through my dissertation. I recorded and archived the oral histories in partnership with El Paso Food Voices, an open-source digital archive and oral history project of El Paso’s food cultures. In this presentation, then, I introduce the oral history project and examples from the literary texts that influenced the project’s creation. Next, I share excerpts from the interviews and discuss common themes that emerged. I conclude the presentation with a reflection of how the narrator’s memories have shaped my understanding of queer food. 

Melissa Montanari

Craving as Queer Way-Making

Theorizing with two fictional texts– C Pam Zhang’s Land of Milk and Honey and Francesca Ekwuyasi’s Butter Honey Pig Bread– my paper frames craving as a brilliantly queer orientation. Through this work I aim to unsettle craving’s alignment with pathology, that is, as indicative of a nutrient deficiency or unruly appetite. Instead, I begin to frame craving, as a queer way-making device, such as it is depicted in Zhang’s and Ekwuyasi’s works. For Zhang’s chef, craving lettuce at the end of the world leads her to reimagining what desire could feel like. For Ekwuyasi’s twins, food cravings, as well as the absence of craving, mark different forms of intimacy–from familial, to platonic, to sensual and sexual–that are at times liberatory and at others, fraught. Not only do these novels align craving’s orienting and way-making potential with Sara Ahmed’s conception of “orientation” in Queer Phenomenology, but they also foreground the affordances of food and flavour in writing queer longing, desire, memory and futurity in literature. This paper is an exploration into craving’s queerness and I look forward to the opportunity to do this work in a room with cool fellow queers!


Making it Up: Queer Food Creation 

Virtual- projected in Room #122

Lou Aphramor, Andrea Natan Feltrin, Stephen Stresow, Fields Utz

Lou Aphramor

Otherworlding through Kitchen Table Pedagogy: How can food queer?

In this presentation I demonstrate three short activities which I have found useful for initiating generative conversation with a range of audiences who have a personal, activist, andor professional interest in food, flourishing and embodiment. The activities  - which do not require in-depth nutrition knowledge- are designed to enact a liberatory pedagogy, which, by destabilising conventional notions of Expert and troubling the conceit of (colonial) Truth, is inherently queer. 

Each short activity invites new framings of food/eating/’health’ that accommodates ways-of-knowing, and variables, jettisoned as irrelevant by public health nutrition’s biomedical model. This allows in the sensual, affective, spiritual, visceral, and peoples’ dis/likes, values, circumstances. It also reveals how conventional food talk mobilises the deep logic of coloniality, including ableism, anti-fatness, anti-Blackness, anti-queerness. 

A key strategy is to over-ride the binary, and I will share ideas for how to do this through food conversations and writing, so that we are thinking queerly - through entanglement and inter-connection  -  and composting the hierarchies and silos and of whiteness and straightness (as ideologies, not people). I hope the un/learning helps participants with any conflicts in personal  food intimacies, catalyses more ideas for liberatory food work, and nurtures queer joy. 

Andrea Natan Feltrin

In an era marked by environmental crises and the urgency to reevaluate our food systems, precision fermentation emerges as a transformative force with ecological and social implications. This paper explores the intersectionality between food queerness and precision fermentation—a promising avenue for revolutionizing our food production.

Precision fermentation envisions a future where conventional agriculture becomes obsolete, ecological burdens are alleviated, and global food demands are efficiently met. However, it also raises questions about its potential impact on inclusivity, diversity, and social justice within the food system.

Drawing inspiration from the LGBTQ+ community's values of challenging norms, promoting inclusivity, and embracing intersectionality, this paper argues that precision fermentation offers a unique opportunity to queerness our food system. It can challenge culinary norms through innovative ingredients and techniques, promote inclusivity by accommodating diverse dietary preferences, and celebrate intersectionality by incorporating various cultural and ethnic cuisines.

By harnessing precision fermentation's potential for culinary intersectionality, we can not only revolutionize food production but also foster a more inclusive, diverse, and socially just food system. This paper engages with the ecological, ethical, and social dimensions of this transformative technology, highlighting its potential to reshape our relationship with food and create a more sustainable and equitable future.

Stephen Stresow

The idea that “vegetables are a social construct” is an introductory botany lesson that embodies the legacy that colonialism and imperialism have had on the global food system. Instead of having a botanical definition, vegetables are defined by human values. This has reduced the types of crops cultivated globally. In many instances, climate-resilient indigenous vegetables have been replaced with crops that meet Euro-centric demands. Here, vegetables are critically analyzed through the lens of queer theory. This academic discipline challenges normativity and the process of normalization. It is used to expand one’s thinking, which is critical for addressing food security issues. This paper serves as an introduction to queer theory for horticulturists. The social construction of vegetables extends across the food system and has historically been used to indicate that some diets and cultures–because of the food they ate–were superior to others. Negative social attitudes towards vegetables limit their consumption, especially because they challenge hegemonic masculinity. This paper aims to “queer,” i.e., challenge, the idea of vegetables and analyze 1) the plants we call vegetables, 2) how these crops are grown, and 3) how these crops are consumed. It is a call for horticulturists to engage more with social theories.

Fields Utz

This paper explores queer food: its creation, consciousnesses and context in modern America, its current reality, and its possibilities for pleasure, caregiving, and expansive future-oriented worlding. As I've discovered in my research, the epistemology of queer food derives from both a theoretical background of queer theory and an emergent scholarship on critical food studies. By analyzing "queer food" examples in popular media, literature, and personal experiences, this paper offers a multidisciplinary approach to understanding the uses and meanings of "queer food" through the lenses of queer theory, critical food studies, and ethics of care. By addressing questions of performative power, identity, and consumption, this paper posits "queer food" as both a practical and radical basis for mutual-aid and person-to-person food-based care. Queer food is not a reflection of an ingredient's nutritive properties but instead a reflection of the relationship between any food's eaters and makers. This paper exists to argue: Queer food is, above all, a practice of care, one you can only see in action. 


11:15am-12:45pm

These Cookies are Going to Change Your Life: An Introduction to Self-Expression Through Pastry Recipe Experimentation Workshop

Room #131

Anna Salzman

Being queer is creating a way of life out of what we find on paths forged in a world that doesn’t hold space for us. I relate this to moving through gentrified urban spaces where natural elements of the landscape are unseen or underutilized. There exists a counter current of abundance with the potential to be transformed into something unique — Delicious, lasting, sweet, tart, never the same twice food to be shared with those willing to revel in the secret satisfaction of that which can only be created from discernment, curiosity, tenderness and ingenuity; which I hold to be cornerstones of my queer identity.

I propose a fermentation workshop where I talk generally about foraging, detail what is available locally that time of year and provide identification resources. This would segue into a hands-on demonstration where participants will choose to create something savory (vinegar) or sweet (cheong) with a foraged food that they will get to take home, observe in transformation and enjoy. The goal is to demystify fermentation through demonstrating two simple processes for converting raw food into preserved food and to encourage participants to look beyond the limited food-scope provided to us by western agricultural and distribution methods.


Workshop: Queer Eating: Design, Ritual, & Transgression

Room #124 

Mattie Brice

Just as the word queer is paradoxical by being both a stable political identity and constantly morphing in appearance and action, the food in ‘queer food’ is mainly not about the food itself. In fact it is more a queer eating, the ways in which queerness shows up and acts in the context of having and sharing food. Queer food is a way of interacting with food that speaks to community and survival, both living differently and generating new forms of relating that seep from the dining table to public consciousness. This workshop pulls together different disciplines within design that can contribute to creating queer eating experiences, such as eating, ritual, and play designs. Each lens will help us analyze eating experiences and find opportunities for queer appropriation, turning what might be cisheteronormative relationships with food into opportunities to be differently. We will use roleplay to understand how the eating experience is a cultural ritual, and then go through exercises to queer business-as-usual eating into transformative meals. The goal of the workshop is to develop strategies and practices for creating bespoke eating experiences around the food we serve in order to create room for new subversive ways of relating to emerge.

 

Absente et Pourtant Concentrée (Absent Yet Focused) : a Documentary Exploration Workshop 

Hybrid Presentation- Room #122 

Félixe Kazi-Tani

A nonbinary queer designer, researcher and visual artist, I'm engaged in what could be called research-creation, or art-based research (affiliation: Plateforme Art, Design & Société, EnsadLab, École Nationale des Arts Décoratifs-PSL, Paris). My research is based on the observation that the cultures and culinary practices to which I have been accustomed, carry with them a confusing ambivalence. Associated with family care, the art of living and conviviality, cooking is nonetheless a matrix of class, gender and racial hierarchies, contributing to the specist, heterosexist and capitalist normalization of bodies, right down to their most intimate metabolic and biological functions. Here, my queer political subjectivity offers me the necessary standpoint to begin a critical observation of the modern and contemporary culinary culture influenced by western habitus. Through my personal practice of collecting, I have assembled a heterogeneous corpus of documents, including classic and antique cookbooks, feminist cookbooks, prison cookbooks, community cookbooks, colonial cookbooks, etiquette books, educational manuals, family, documentary or professional photographs, ephemera and printed matter, correspondence, etc. Each one of these documents something-but-what-? of our domestic, culinary and commensal life.

This messy archive provides me with a critical matter which I shift, displace, transform, cross-reference with contradictory theoretical perspectives and edit into installations (mixed materials that can be prints, videos, ceramics, photos or/and everything at once) that are, in my research practice, critical observation tools. Consequently, I'd love to submit to the participants of QFC24 aworkshop as a conducted critical visit of an online version of my installation Absente Et Pourtant Concentrée (displayed at the Musée d'Art Contemporain de Lyon in sept.-oct. 23). I might describe it as a virtual stroll to be taken in my corpus, where the visitor is invited to confront Monique Wittig, Paul B. Preciado, Georges Bataille, lost lesbian archives, found photographs, "uncreative" fictions, testimonies of queer cultures, etc. Here, I use and share the principles of installation as a critical and dialectic matrix for thoughts in my attempts to shed light on the intricate multiplicity of alienations literally at work "in the kitchen", and the micro-strategies of reappropriation and empowerment nurturing practices make possible.

 

12:45-1:45pm LUNCH

 

1:45-3:15pm

 

Kitchen Connection: Self Queeries Workshop

Room #124

Corrine DaCosta and Khori Eubanks

In this workshop, we will be connecting with self and community to show up in the kitchen authentically. Using the Kitchen Connection core values breakout sessions can investigate and discuss what the principles mean to them in a workbook provided.

 

Nourishing Connections Queer Food Fanzines Workshop

Room #131

Ericka Mabrie, Jackson Tucker, Iñaki Zárate

Food serves as both sustenance and as a powerful tool for building communities. For queer folx, food and identity can be particularly significant, but these stories must be shared. This workshop explores and celebrates the multifaceted role of food in queer communities through the creation of a community-based queer food fanzine (based on an on-going project by the workshop contributors). We explore “Queer Food Narratives,” i.e. how food intersects with queer identity, culture, and history; discuss narratives and personal stories related to queer food experiences and our relationships with food and how it shapes queer identities. Then, we provide hands-on guidance on Community-Based Fanzine creation, layout, and design; collaboratively brainstorm and develop content ideas for the fanzine; share our own methodology for others to use and adapt. This highlights the “Impact of Food as a Community Building Tool”; we discuss examples of how food has been used as a community-building tool within the queer community (research from Bogotá and Brooklyn, Tucker and Zárate), discuss the role of food events and rituals in fostering a sense of belonging (autoethnographic work from Mabrie, Brooklyn, NY); and explore the potential of fanzines as a tool for sharing, preserving, and amplifying queer food stories.

Staying Friends with Your (Business) Exes: A Legal Workshop for Queer Food Businesses Workshop 

Virtual- projected in Room #122

Erika Dunyak and Liz Turner

Queerness for food and farm businesses means decentralized power, collaboration, and democracy. This means that lots of folks might be in leadership or ownership roles when your company gets started, and lofty ideals and personal relationships may be foundational to your business plan. But what happens when it’s time for someone to move on? What about if you need to kick someone out? What about trying to bring in new investment consistent with your community-minded ethics? During this session, we’ll explore how to set the rules while you still like the people whom you are going into business with. By building predictability into the exit/entry/investment processes early, former founders can stay friends and businesses won’t have to dish out money on lawyers to help navigate fragile, and sometimes resentful, relationships. We’ll talk about contracts, operating agreements, cooperatives, and more. This workshop is for anyone who is thinking about starting a new business or is looking for help (re-)shaping the governance of an existing enterprise. This in-person session will be led by attorneys Liz Turner and Erika Dunyak.

 

 

3:30-5:00pm

 

Nonbinary Botany: Cultivating Pollinator Community Workshop

Room #124

Chris Keeve and K Greene

The Nonbinary Botany project has been facilitating and participating in conversations around how to undo the often colonial and heteronormative language and practice of mainstream horti/culture and agri/culture, encouraging folks to think critically about their relations to plants and seeds, starting with their own human and nonhuman communities. As seedkeepers and land workers, we intend to continue this conversation about queer botanical relations with food and farming folks. As one of the means of reproduction, seeds are the foundation to food systems. Relations with seeds provide material ways of connecting with land, self, pasts, and futures in ways that, we hope, can work to undo the normativity and linearity of capitalist, colonial and binary food and land systems.

Our workshop is envisioned as a cooperative gathering consisting of hands-on seed-centered creativity, relational mapping, moments of storytelling, and community building across different perspectives, experiences, and positionalities. We intend to introduce the project and open the discussion to the mycelium of knowledge and ideas with folks in the room. We hope to find value in intentionally growing community in intersection with this work, continuing to deepen and widen our network of queer pollinators, and creating opportunities for connection and inspiration.


The Irreversible Damage Supper Club Workshop

Room #131

Isabel Marie Barbosa and Lauren Campbell


The Irreversible Damage Supper Club invites its members on a journey through historic queer caretaking dynamics using cooking as inquiry.

 

In response to the caretaking demands  of gender affirming surgery, the artist recreated a series of recipes from the 1990s dark humor zine Diseased Pariah News, drawing forth a connection between past and present to the dearth of resources allocated to trans and queer livelihoods; offering, in its place,  a hopeful, community-focused alternative to those who find liberation in shared experience.

 

The Club is an embodied research project whose initial demonstration explores dynamics of ability, intimacy, and systems of structural neglect—and whose trajectory fosters reflexive participation, affording an affective throughline to knowledge that steps outside the prescriptive framework of research, and into the vulnerable and didactic web of knowledge-sharing that is so historically queer.

 

This workshop will ask participants to create their own food-forward personal ads in the style of the “Meat Market” column while eating a shared meal pulled from the pages of DPN.  The personal ads, produced in conversation with the artist, will then be incorporated into a zine exploring the totality of this project.

 


Self-Publishing is Queer Publishing: A Food Writing and Rapid Publishing Workshop

Room #122

Emma Honcharski, Nina Katz, and Clare Lagomarsino

In Self-Publishing is Queer Publishing: A Food Writing and Rapid Publishing Workshop, participants will use the lens of queer publishing to write broadly about food that will then be rapidly self-published as an anthology at the end of the workshop. This workshop is perfect for those who are interested in food writing but are disillusioned with the media landscape, or are interested in queer food storytelling. The facilitators will frame self-publishing as a way to connect with our communities through an accessible form of information distribution and art-making. After being introduced to the framework of self-publishing by Emma Honcharski, Nina Katz will lead the group through a writing workshop revolving around a series of prompts developed to evoke insights on how food connects to their queer lives. Prompts will touch on topics such as nostalgia, kinship, and food landscapes. After 30 minutes of writing, participants will pass their work to Clare Lagomarsino, who will use simple production tools to lead a live demo of rapid publishing. In-person participants will leave this workshop with a zine of the group’s writing. Virtual participants are invited to write from the prompts and their writing will be included in a digital collection.

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Post Conference Event:

Dinner at the High Street Hall with the Big Queer Food Fest

This event will require a separate ticket. Here is the link to register: https://bigqueerfoodfest.com/pages/boston

Out and proud chefs and brands from across New England and beyond are serving up a delicious array of bites and cocktails. Music and entertainment will keep the party going all evening long! This evening coincides with the end of the first-ever Queer Food Conference, creating a powerful synergy between food, celebration, and education.

Chefs include Tiffani Fasion, Kareem Queeman, Karen Akunowicsz, Tatiana Rosana, Robert Gonzalez, Michele Ragussis, and more!