Nau mai e ka hua e hora nei.
Here are the fruits laid out before us.

Call for Papers: Issue 22 (2021-2022) Food

Nau mai e ka hua e hora nei. Here are the fruits laid out before us.

This is an opening line of a karakia, a Māori incantation that acknowledges food, the places it comes from and the role it plays in communities. It reminds us implicitly that food is both necessary for survival as well as being culturally mediated. This issue of Junctures invites contributions that reflect on the centrality of food in culture and society from both these positions. Deliberately broad in scope, we call for a range of submissions that, taken collectively, can propose a hermeneutics as well as an axiology of food that resonates across the hard sciences, humanities, visual culture, social sciences, law, education, and medicine.

Possible topics for discussion include – but are by no means limited to – the following:

  • How do we deal with questions of food (in)security in the face of rising hunger in Africa, Western Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean? It is estimated that over two billion people do not have regular access to safe, nutritious, and sufficient food, while compromises on the quality of food being consumed is resulting in increasing obesity in all regions, particularly among school-age children and adults. How do we mitigate the prediction that the World Health Organisation’s 2030 zero hunger target will not be achieved unless recent trends are reversed?

  • What are the impacts of climate change on food production, supply and consumption? It is increasingly evident that global warming and related environmental change, coupled with unsustainable farming practices, are contributing dramatically to food insecurity. In a context of increasing soil degradation, water pollution, deforestation and erosion, what are the inevitable social, cultural, biological and geopolitical consequences of our growing dependence on large-scale, intensive agriculture? What possibilities does small-scale urban farming present in enabling more sustainable and locally responsive practices?

  • Food plays an important role in indigenous cultures, being incorporated into rituals, having various symbolic roles, and often being regarded as “medicine”. Traditional foods, and the production and transformation systems around them, strengthen a person’s sense of place, identity and connection. What possibilities do indigenous food cultures, founded on sustainability and connectivity to land and nature, hold for methods of food production? Can indigenous knowledge systems provide sustainable models that better allow natural resources to be preserved while protecting communities and the environment?

  • How do we challenge the neoliberal patterns of consumption and manufactured demand that supports the ever-expanding fast-food industry? Fast food is both notoriously poor in nutrition and dependent on supply chains that perpetuate unsustainable mass farming practice. The slow food movement that originated in the 1980s speaks out against overproduction and food waste, advocating for the protection and inclusion of small and local farmers and food producers in the global food system. What lessons do the slow flood movement hold in our current global context, and how can its proposed solutions be meaningfully scaled?

  • What impact has the global Covid-19 pandemic had on our relationships with, and consumption of, food? While middle-class consumers had the privilege of ‘discovering’ domestic cooking during extended lockdowns and enjoying do-it-yourself home-cooking kits, supply chains remained dependent on vulnerable low-paid workers who we were in the frontline of the pandemic. What are the long-term implications and lessons that can be inferred from the socio-economic exigencies of Covid-19 in relation to food?

  • Given the important role food plays in all cultures it has developed its own aesthetics. What social, cultural and political meanings are symbolically encoded in the visuality of food and the vessels used for preparing, presenting and consuming it?

Junctures invites submissions from authors on these or other themes that engage the complexities, contradictions and coherences that underlie our relationship with food. In the interests of highlighting the resonances and disturbances of dialogue we encourage discussion across boundaries, whether disciplinary, geographic, cultural, social, or economic.

With New Zealand and the Asia-Pacific region as a backdrop – but not its only stage –Junctures seeks to address the matters which concern us all as we negotiate the contemporary environment. In addition to discursive academic articles, Junctures accepts narratives, commentaries and interventions that sit outside conventional academic contexts. All submissions are peer-reviewed.

The deadline for the submission of papers has been extended to 30 April 2022. There is a 4,000-word limit for feature articles. Please enquire about submission guidelines for other formats.

Editors: Ron Bull, Tumuaki Whakaako ron.bull@op.ac.nzjunctures@op.ac.nz 
and Professor Federico Freschi, Head of College - Te Maru Pūmanawa | College of Creative Practice and Enterprise federico.freschi@op.ac.nz