Food and its (Dis)Contents

July 10, 2023 - 4:00 pm

Room 9205
The Graduate Center, CUNY

In this panel, scholars will focus on the role of food in transnational contexts and the formation of Hispano-Asian Culture and Identity.

Culinary Racial/Ethnic Discrimination and Resisting Racism through Food Allegories

In this talk, I illustrate how Spanish artists of Asian Descent challenge racial discrimination through food allegories. Food as an anti-racist strategy is practical because much of the intolerance and ostracization against Asians is expressed through culinary references such as dog eaters and unhygienic eateries. One of the Chinese-Spanish artists I focus on is Chenta Tsai, who draws on the diasporic foodways of Chinese migrants who went to work in remote places in California as railway laborers in the nineteenth century as well as the coolies who went to Cuba and Peru and replaced the enslaved Africans after the abolition. By contextualizing how iconic Chinese dishes like “arroz tres delicias” and “chop users” were improvised out of precarity and scarcity, Tsai constructs his identity as a diasporic subjectivity in solidarity with those who were displaced, marginalized, and discriminated.

Yeon-Soo Kim (Ph.D., Yale University) is an Associate Professor of Spanish at Rutgers University. She is the author of The Family Album: Histories, Subjectivities, and Immigration in Contemporary Spanish Culture. Her current book project is on Asian Spanish artists’ antiracist strategies, where she examines the textual coalition around food as an antiracist metaphor, racial melancholia’s potential for affective reprobation, and the new intimate public against racialized sexuality.

Oishii Perú: La comida peruana en el país del sol naciente*

En esta presentación me enfocaré en el festival culinario “Oishii Perú” el cual se ha llevado a cabo en Japón desde hace casi una década. Mi interés no es solo resaltar la importancia de la comida peruana en Japón sino las actividades culturales que se llevan a cabo alrededor de este festival.

*This presentation will be in Spanish

Araceli Tinajero (Ph.D., Rutgers University) is Professor of Spanish at The Graduate Center and City College of New York, CUNY. She is the author of Orientalismo en el modernismo hispanoamericanoEl Lector: A History of the Cigar Factory ReaderKokoro: A Mexican Woman in Japan, and A Cultural History of Spanish Speakers in Japan.

Moderator: TBA

Organizer: Araceli Tinajero, City College/The Graduate Center, CUNY

TO REGISTER send email to