Are We What We Eat?
American Jewish Foodways, 1654-2004

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For 350 years, Jews have been living and eating in America. With its own particular rules, traditions and practices brought from around the world, Jewish culture both influenced and adapted to the foods of other Americans. Kosher Chinese restaurants flourish, while McDonalds serves bagels with ham, cheese and eggs.

Jewish foods and Jewish cooking are among the most accessible aspects of Jewish tradition.  This conference, held on October 10-11, 2004, examined Jewish foodways from historical, sociological and gender perspectives. Scholars gathered to explore the influence Jewish food had in Americawhich Jewish foods have gone mainstream and whyand to analyze how "Jewish cooking" has changed over the years. The conference provided, in addition to lectures, seminars and exhibitions, an opportunity to feast at a historical kosher dinner featuring Jewish foods that have their origins in America’s past three and a half centuries.

"Are We What We Eat" was part of the national effort to celebrate 350 years of Jewish life in America.  The event was sponsored by the Judaic Studies Program of The George Washington University, Lilith Magazine, American Institute of Wine and Food, Jewish Women International, Jewish Women's Archive, and the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington.

Major funding for this conference was granted by:

The Ann L. Bronfman Foundation

BALDUCCI'S Food Lover's Market, Bethesda, MD

The Cooper-Wallerstein Fund for Judaic Studies at GWU

The George Wasserman Family Foundation

The planning committee, participants, and those who attend are deeply grateful for their generosity.



2004 Program in Judaic Studies, The George Washington University
2142 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20052 | phone: (202) 994-2190
Site maintained by Sarah Mergel, Last updated: 23 February 2005