The Culture and Cooking series aims to challenge the way students perceive various cultures.
DVarious dishes representing various Native American cultures were tasted by the students during an educational event organized by the Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs.
âThe Flavors of Diversityâ was the theme of the Wednesday Culture and Cooking series at the Student Office.
Prior to the tasting, the food preparers gave a brief history including the content of the meal and where it came from. After the students tasted the food, guest Dr. Bridwell-Briner discussed what it means to be a part of Native American culture.
Briner, who is Kiowa, Plains Apache, and Comanche, discussed the problem of asking what percentage of Native Americans a person is.
“It’s not about your appearance but your [connections]. Who are your peopleâ¦ We have an idea of ââa National Indian and what someone is supposed to look like, âBriner said.
She pointed out that being part of the Native American lineage cannot be determined by blood numbers.
ODMA Assistant Student Ellie Vilakazi joined the conversation with Briner to answer questions such as: why do we enjoy foods from other cultures and what do these dishes mean?
âFood is such a necessary part of being human, it represents our relationship between people and the environment we live in,â Vilakazi said.
The next time the students ate food from a different culture, Vilakazi hoped that the students would consider the importance of his culture.
âWhat do these foods mean to these peopleâ¦ in their own country, in their cultural context and what does that mean in a global context? “
Viviana Lopez is a writer for University Press. For more information on this story or others, send an email [emailÂ protected]