Native Foods: Agriculture, Indigeneity, and Settler Colonialism in American History (Food and Foodways) (Paperback)
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In Native Foods: Agriculture, Indigeneity, and Settler Colonialism in American History, Michael D. Wise confronts four common myths about Indigenous food history: that most Native communities did not practice agriculture; that Native people were primarily hunters; that Native people were usually hungry; and that Native people never developed taste or cuisine. Wise argues that colonial expectations of food and agriculture have long structured ways of seeing (and of not seeing) Native land and labor.
Combining original historical research with interdisciplinary perspectives and informed by the work of Indigenous food sovereignty advocates and activists, this study sheds new light on the historical roles of Native American cuisine in American history and the significance of ongoing colonial processes in present-day discussions about the place of Native foods and Native history in our evolving worlds of taste, justice, and politics.
About the Author
Michael D. Wise is an environmental historian specializing in the history of food and agriculture and an associate professor of history at the University of North Texas. He is the author of Producing Predators: Wolves, Work, and Conquest in the Northern Rockies.
“Native foods are ubiquitous but unacknowledged. An expert historiography based on thorough research in environmental and social histories, Native Foods frames the rich, emergent, experiential literature on Indigenous foodways in the United States, ending pointedly with a critique of the neocolonial quest for native superfoods to save us from the travails of Euro-American civilization.”
—Krishnendu Ray, author of The Migrant’s Table