How can food break down cultural difference: Breathing, sleeping, eating, family these are all basic universal experiences all humans understand.
The first step to a more unified society is understanding. Shared communal experiences are the most common way humans pass information. The most common shared communal experience is the ritual of eating together.
I want you to just think about the idea of food for a second. Every holiday has a ritual revolving food. Almost every religious experience has a food attached to it. Why do we attach food to special occasions and do the special occasions influence the food that we eat.
I want you to really think about that for a second. What does the story of food tell you about the people who created it.
For example in America, Thanksgiving and turkey has a history. In Canada they are famous for a dish called Poutine. Ireland you think of potatoes
When you think of Italian food you think of Marinara sauce, and pasta, but if you do a little digging Italians didn’t invent either. In India Curry is not the curry you know. The curry in your cubert is a british invention.
Have you every wondered why is Soy Sauce served at Chinese food restaurants. Is this an American thing or does it have cultural roots in China Chinese history.
People’s relationship with food is a great way to understand people who created it, and help breach the cultural divide.
How can we use food to help breach the cultural divide.
Every culture around the world has traditions revolving around food. This is a perfect place to start learning if you’re interested in breaching the cultural divide.
Humans naturally want to form societies. It goes back to our caveman days as a survival mechanism. Humans do not have great physical abilities. We don’t have claws, we’re not that fast, we’re not that strong. But what we do have is the ability to work in groups. To hunt to build and to start communities, that work as a collective for the betterment of the group. In these communities traditions are born. Stories are told and culture is developed.
The stories about people’s food, is a history of their culture. These stories are what make you who you are. By understanding the stories you have the ability to understand a culture and to understand its people.
Understanding the people and their struggles you will learn to appreciate said culture. By learning the history of food you’ll be able to connect with that culture at a fundamental level.
How do I become part of the change
If you are truly interested in being part of social change. Ask yourself how I can do better. Where do I start? What is the right way for me to learn and share this information with my family.
Start by making a tradition in your own family. Choose one family dinner a week.
Try making or ordering something new from another culture. Designate someone in the family to do a little research on that dish. All it takes is a quick google search and you can find all sorts of fun information.
And while you are eating, have a discussion on what you learned.
Learning about other cultures’ food is a starting point that we all can understand. We all have this reference point in our experiences. Food equals traditions, traditions equals relationships, relationships are a key part to understanding .
If you understand the relationship a culture has with its food you can start understanding their culture and start breaching the cultural divide.