American chef, restaurateur, and author Alice Waters once remarked, "since Homer, the foods we eat have reflected our culture's most closely held values and understanding of our place in the world…taste is an essential part of civilization, and that is something worth protecting from the homogenizing force of the modern global food supply."
Throughout history, food has served as more than just a source of sustenance. It has, and still plays, a vital role in cultural, economic, and political arenas. Food writer Georgia Freedman will discuss the cuisine of Yunnan and what it reveals about the history of the region. Yale historian Paul Freedman and Georgia Freedman will then engage in a captivating dialogue on the importance of food throughout history and in society today.
The language of the event will be English.
Registration and Payment
Free for students and teachers; RMB 60 for Yale alumni; RMB 80 for others.
Please note: All attendee information collected by Yale Center Beijing through the event registration form on this website, or by any other means, will be kept strictly confidential. Yale Center Beijing will never distribute, sell, license, or otherwise make available for any purpose, any attendee information to any third party, unless otherwise required by law.
Chester D. Tripp Professor of History at Yale University
Paul Freedman is professor of history at Yale University where he has taught since 1997 and has served as Chair of the History Department. His primary interests are in the field of medieval European history and the history of food and cuisine, and has produced many related books and articles.
In 2007 Freedman edited Food: The History of Taste, which won a prize from the International Association of Culinary Professionals and has been translated into ten languages. This began a series of studies about the role of food in shaping cultures and historical trends. Out of the East: Spices and the Medieval Imagination (2008), looks at the desire for spices in the Middle Ages and how it led to European exploration and conquest.
Freedman is the author of Ten Restaurants that Changed America (2016), a way of looking at US food history through ten examples, including Chinese and Italian cuisines adapted to American tastes. His new book, American Cuisine: How It Got This Way, will appear in October 2019.
Food and Travel Writer; Former Managing Editor at Saveur
Georgia Freedman is a food and travel writer whose articles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Saveur, Lucky Peach, Rodale's Organic Life, and Zester Daily. She has been traveling to China to learn about the country's culture and food since 2000. Having spent many years living in Yunnan and studying the province’s diverse food culture and regional differences, she is particularly interested in how cross-cultural trade and interaction has created a unique and delicious array of foods in Yunnan with influences from various and sometimes unexpected places.
Her new book, Cooking South of the Clouds—Recipes and Stories from China’s Yunnan Province, was published in 2018.