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Anthony Di Fiore, Chair SAC 4.102, Mailcode C3200 78712 • 512-471-4206

Amber O'Connor

PhD, The University of Texas at Austin

PhD, Assistant Instructor
Amber O'Connor



Foodways, Mesoamerica, Identity, Symbolic Communication, Religious Conversion, Gender, Nutrition, Sustainability, Ethnobotany

ANT 322M • Indians Of Mex And Guatemala

31625 • Spring 2014
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm BUR 136
(also listed as LAS 324L )
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ANT 307 • Culture And Communication

31085 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 930am-1100am UTC 4.110
(also listed as LIN 312 )
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“Foodways are one of many aspects of ethnic traditional culture which can be studied as a communicative or semiotic system much as language is studied.  The term semiotics refers to the study of signs and symbols including linguistic and para-linguistic communication.”  - (Susan Kalçik 1984:46)


This course will have a heavy focus on the semiotics of the material culture and practices surrounding food.  We will investigate theories and methodologies in the tool kit of the linguistic anthropologist and apply them to the communicative system of foodways.  Food is a perfect example of cultural text, which can be read in interdisciplinary ways to learn more about the culture in question.  We will use linguistic methods and theory to analyze the ways language and food are used to communicate nuances of identity.  


2014.  Heritage Foodways:  Reproducing Identity.  Anthropology News.  March.

2012. Conversion in South Central Quintana Roo: Changes in Religion, Community, Economy and Nutrition in a Maya Village.  Food, Culture and Society. Berg Publishers. Vol 15.1.

2010.  Maya Foodways: A Reflection of Gender and Ideology. In Pre-Columbian Foodways: Interdisciplinary Approaches To Food, Culture, and Markets in Mesoamerica. Eds. John E. Staller and Michael D. Carrasco. Springer, NY.

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