Spanning nearly six hundred years of Japanese food culture, Japanese Foodways, Past and Present considers the production, consumption, and circulation of Japanese foods from the mid-fifteenth century to the present day in contexts that are political, economic, cultural, social, and religious. Diverse contributors--including anthropologists, historians, sociologists, a tea master, and a chef--address a range of issues such as medieval banquet cuisine, the tea ceremony, table manners, cookbooks in modern times, food during the U.S. occupation period, eating and dining out during wartimes, the role of heirloom vegetables in the revitalization of rural areas, children's lunches, and the gentrification of blue-collar foods. Framed by two reoccurring themes--food in relation to place and food in relation to status--the collection considers the complicated relationships between the globalization of foodways and the integrity of national identity through eating habits.
Focusing on the consumption of Western foods, heirloom foods, once-taboo foods, and contemporary Japanese cuisines, Japanese Foodways, Past and Present shows how Japanese concerns for and consumption of food has relevance and resonance with other foodways around the world. Contributors are Stephanie Assmann, Gary Soka Cadwallader, Katarzyna Cwiertka, Satomi Fukutomi, Shoko Higashiyotsuyanagi, Joseph R. Justice, Michael Kinski, Barak Kushner, Bridget Love, Joji Nozawa, Tomoko Onabe, Eric C. Rath, Akira Shimizu, George Solt, David E. Wells, and Miho Yasuhara.