When does national food emerge?

Date(s) - 21/05/2019
17:30 - 19:00

32 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, LSE


This year’s ASEN Seminar Series has as topic: ‘Nationalism and International Relations’. The six seminars will explore, over the year, the intersection between self-determination, identity, foreign policy and state behaviour.

Atsuko Ichijo, Venetia Johannes and Ronald Ranta will discuss the intersection between nationalism and food on the occasion of the publication of their new book: The Emergence of National Food: The Dynamics of Food and Nationalism.


Please, get your tickets on Eventbrite


The book explores the role of food in society as a means of interrogating the concept of the nation-state and its sub-units, and reveal how the nation-state in its various disguises has been and is changing in response to accelerated globalisation. The chapters investigate various stages of national food: its birth, emergence, and decline, and why sometimes no national food emerges. By collecting and analysing a wide range of case studies from countries including Portugal, Mexico, the USA, Bulgaria, Scotland, and Israel, the book illustrates ways in which various social forces work together to shape social and political realities concerning food.

The contributors, hailing from anthropology, history, sociology and political science, investigate the significance of specific food cultures, cuisines, dishes, and ingredients, and their association with national identity. In so doing, it becomes clearer how these two things interact, and demonstrates the scope and direction of the current study of food and nationalism.


Atsuko Ichijo is Associate Professor of Politics at Kingston University. She completed her PhD at the LSE and her thesis was published as Scottish Nationalism and the Idea of Europe: Concepts of Europe and the Nation (2004) by Routledge. Her research has focused on the relationship between supranationalism (European integration) and nationalism (Scottish and British nationalism). She is a member of International Advisory Council of the Association for the Study of Ethnicity and Nationalism (ASEN) a member of the editorial team of Nations and Nationalism.

Venetia Johannes is affiliated with the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Oxford, where she is preparing her doctoral research for publication as an ethnographic monograph. The title of my doctoral thesis was ‘Nourishing the Nation: Manifestations of Catalan Identity through Food’. Dr Johannes has worked in finance and marketing research.

Ronald Ranta is senior lecturer in politics and international relations at Kingston University as well as the politics department’s postgraduate programme coordinator and course leader for the MSc in international relations. I joined the department in 2014, having previously taught at Bath University, SOAS, Metropolitan University and UCL.


The seminar will take place on Room 32L.B.07 32 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, LSE at 18:30. The event is open to all and allocated on a first come, first served basis. You need to register in order to access the building. Please note that having a ticket does not guarantee a spot. Check more information on the event on Facebook.