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Outside/In: Food, Culture, & Colonialism

corn-43314_1280.jpg
Public domain
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Corn in a market in Peru

Not too long ago, four Outside/In producers waged an epic fruit fight: a good-natured debate of culinary and cultural history, aimed at deciding which seed-bearing delicacy ought to be crowned the GFOAT, or the Greatest Fruit of All Time: the pepper, the gourd, the coconut, or the vanilla bean. 

The debate inspired a handful of well-argued (and listener-submitted) write-in candidates, as well as a thoughtful conversation about the deep connections between food, culture, and colonialism. 

 

Rice is Food, And Other Stories

Lauren Baker, Grant Bosse, and Hallie Casey

Three new listener-submitted contenders for our Greatest Fruit of All Time contest: Corn, Grapes, and Rice. 

Food, Culture, and Colonialism

Taylor Quimby and Justine Paradis

A domesticated species that produces food is almost necessarily a collaboration between the natural world and a cultural history: fruit-bearing plants and the people that tend them, export them, and ingest them, are inextricably intertwined.

So it's perhaps no surprise that behind the foods we love are human stories of migration, adaptation, and colonialism's enduring mark on cultures around the world.

Featuring Alicia Kennedy and Coral Lee.

Further reading: 

“On Luxury” by Alicia Kennedy

“C is for Colonialism’s Effect on How and What We Eat” by Coral Lee

 

A 2013 Scientific American article on America’s corn system.

 

Outside/In is NHPR's podcast about the natural world and how we use it. Click here for podcast episodes and more.

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