Cristina Grasseni: "Food Citizens? Collective food procurement in European cities: solidarity and diversity, skills and scale"
Departmental Seminar Series features Cristina Grasseni, Professor of Anthropology and Head of Department, Institute of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology, Leiden University.
The seminar is followed by informal gathering, at which refreshments are served. All are welcome!
My presentation will illustrate my ongoing ERC Consolidator project: 'Food citizens? Collective food procurement in European cities: solidarity and diversity, skills and scale'. Looking at current literature on food and citizenship, with this project I have highlighted some of the contradictions and problematic aspects of notions of (active) citizenship, civic duty and social solidarity, as they increasingly become associated with alternative food networks in institutionally sponsored discourse. I begin by introducing a definition of "collective food procurement," which might help reframing the issue of European food systems not only from an agricultural and logistic point of view, but also from a sociocultural point of view that goes beyond individual preferences and tastes. This understanding of food provisioning adds a "meso" level to analyses of food systems focused on macro (logistics) and micro (individual consumers) level. In sum, collective food procurement highlights how food is a mediator of relations within social networks, not only a commodity or nutrient. I will also dwell on how we intend to analyse this comparatively in three European sites and with digital media.
Professor Cristina Grasseni is a social anthropologist who specializes in visual research and economic and political anthropology. Her ambition is to make these two pillars converge more. That is also the set-up of her ERC Consolidator five-year project Food Citizens? Collective food procurement in European cities: solidarity and diversity, skills and scale (2017-2022).
Professor Grasseni has conducted research on solidarity economies, sustainability and social contestation (Beyond Alternative Food Networks, 2013); food heritage (The Heritage Arena, 2017) and visual and sensory ethnography (Digital Visual Engagements, special issue of Anthrovision.revues.org, 2014).
Grasseni’s publications include seven monographs, five special issues in peer-reviewed journals, and more than one hundred items among peer-reviewed articles, book chapters and edited volumes. Further information