Gastronomy as a tool for peace and resistance in the Holy Land

University essay from

Abstract: This thesis is a study within the international master program “Religion in Peace and Conflict” at the department of theology at Uppsala University. The study should be seen as a microstudy over the role gastronomy plays as a tool for peace and resistance in the Holy Land. Jerusalem represent Israel and Tabye and Bethlehem represent Palestine in the study. The method used is the so-called abductive method or reasoning, where I am the one who is observing and analysing data from an ethnographical standpoint. The study is interdisciplinary in the way that cookbooks, interviews, personal observations and photographs are used as primary sources.  The theory “The gastronomic man” are the theoretical framework. The theory deals with the factors that are of importance for the choices humans make when it comes to food and beverage. The results of the study indicates that gastronomy is present at least on two levels in society in the Holy Land, on a high political level manifested via diplomatic gastronomy and on a more personal level where the informants works with gastronomy both as a tool for peace, and for the Palestinians also a way to overcome the effects of the occupation. The results also indicates that education within the culinary arts are of great importance in order to understand other groups’ cuisines than one’s own. The cuisines that falls back on heritage, culture and nations. It is suggested that gastronomy can take the part of religion itself for its practitioners since themselves constructs what is sacred.

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