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A peer-review paper co-authored by Harrisburg University Interactive Media Professor Dr. Kelly Boudreau was recently published in a special issue of Popular Culture Studies Journal titled, “Reconnecting: Food, Popular Culture, and the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

The paper, “Pandemic Pets de Soeurs: Connecting French-Canadian Food, Culture, and Nostalgia Online,” examines the role of food and how it connects people, families, and communities. The authors, Boudreau and Marc Ouellette, discuss what happened to food rituals when people were bound to their homes and could not meet due to the COVID 19 pandemic.

The following is from the paper’s abstract:

“From traditional, celebratory feasts to ‘game day’ food rituals, food is something that connects people, families, and communities.  But what happens when people are bound to their homes and cannot meet up to share in food rituals? For many, they turn to sharing their food on social media. Of course, sharing food pictures on social media is nothing new (Abbar, Mejova, and Weber, 2015; Rousseau, 2012), but during the lockdowns of the Covid-19 global pandemic (2020-21), there was a shift from hosting family dinners in person to sharing pictures of food on social media.

Through an auto-ethnographic approach combining the authors intersecting experiences with cooking and sharing traditional recipes and pictures from their (unbeknownst shared?) background on social media, this article explores the connections between a resurgence of cooking traditional and nostalgic recipes during the Covid-19 Pandemic, the use of social media as a shared space to connect with others when physical gatherings are not possible, and how the playful and performative nature social media reshapes the traditional patterns of interactions and cultural framing around making and sharing of food.”

To read the article, click here.


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