Reading Craft Book Event – The Craft We Eat with Bernie Herman on Culinary Craft Ecologies of Virginia’s Eastern Shore
The Craft in America Center is pleased to present an interactive discussion with distinguished Professor Bernard L. Herman on his book A South You Never Ate (2020). Herman explores “the craft we eat” and lays the groundwork for a more expansive definition of craft through this investigation of culinary tradition and its role in community life along the Eastern Shore. This event was streamed live via Zoom and Facebook on June 4, 2021. The book is available for purchase directly from the University of North Carolina Press or your preferred bookseller.
About the A South You Never Ate
Through this blending of history, memories, and observation, Herman reveals how local ingredients-and the cooks who have prepared them for the table-have developed a distinctly American terroir: the flavors of a place experienced through its culinary and storytelling traditions. Four centuries of encounter, imagination, and invention continue to shape the foodways of the Eastern Shore of Virginia, melding influences from Indigenous peoples, European migrants, enslaved and free West Africans, and more recent newcomers. This terroir flourishes even as it confronts challenges from climate change, declining fish populations, and farming monoculture.
About the Author:
Bernard L. Herman is the George B. Tindall Distinguished Professor of American Studies, and Folklore at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where he also serves on the art history faculty. His books include Architecture and Rural Life in Central Delaware 1700-1900, The Stolen House, and Town House: Architecture and Material Life in the Early American City, 1760-1830—each awarded the Abbott Lowell Cummings Award as the best book on North American vernacular architecture. He has published essays on quilts, self-taught and outsider arts, foodways, historical archaeology, vernacular photography, and theoretical approaches to the study and interpretation of objects.