American Studies
American Studies

Gulf Coast Gathering: 1st Annual Foodways Texas Symposium Recap

Mon, March 7, 2011
Gulf Coast Gathering: 1st Annual Foodways Texas Symposium Recap
Photo by Laura Davenport

Foodways Texas hosted our “Gulf Coast Gathering,” the first annual Foodways Texas Symposium February 25-26, 2011 in Galveston, Texas. Guests from across the Texas and the U. S. attended.

n at the Texas Seaport Museum, where Dr. Sammy Raywas honored with the inaugural Foodways Texas Lifetime Achievement Award. Dr. Ray’s exceptional work as a marine biologist has had a profound impact on the fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico for many decades, and he is known around the country for his pioneering research on oysters in and around Galveston Bay.

The programming continued at the Texas A&M University Galveston campus, where we engaged in discussion on a wide range of issues impacting the Gulf of Mexico.

Joe Nick Patoski took us on a photographic tour of the entire 377-mile Texas gulf coast, and challenged us to take a fresh look at the stories our diverse coastline holds. To limit our discussion of the coast to our beaches is to miss most of the story, which occurs in our back bays, estuaries, and barrier islands.

Elizabeth Engelhardt provided an in-depth look at the semantics of the term “foodways,” and how it applies to our mission. Foodways, we learned, includes not only what we eat but why and with whom we eat it. Our foodways signifies our values, our priorities, where we’ve been, where we’re going, and much more. Amy Evans Streeter showcased a sampling of the intriguing oral histories she has gathered for the Southern Foodways Alliance, and we discussed how Foodways Texas will soon embark on our own project to gather similar stories.

Special thanks to everyone in the photo:

AMS undergrads Catherine Dunn and KC Hysmith; AMS Doctoral student Lisa Powell; former longhorn, Katie Walsh; University of Houston volunteers and staff of Gaido's in Galveston.

For questions, please contact Elizabeth Engelhardt or Marvin Bendele.

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