In June of 2012, with the support of the Center for International Education’s Faculty International Development Grant, I traveled to Perugia, Italy to eat my body weight in such local delicacies as homemade barbozzo (cured pig’s meat), porcini alla griglia (grilled porcini mushrooms), and torciglione (an eel-shaped almond pastry). And I also participated in a conference entitled Italian Food: Fact and Fiction at the Umbra Institute, an academic institution where students from a wide variety of American Universities can spend a summer, a semester, or a year abroad taking classes with Italian students from the Università degli studi di Perugia. The Umbra Institute’s interdisciplinary Food Studies Program is a new addition to their curriculum, and the conference was intended to highlight the exciting potential of inter- and multi-disciplinary approaches to Italian food as it relates to Italian national identity. The conference’s keynote speakers were Massimo Montanari, a professor at the University of Bologna and one of the world’s foremost authorities on food history, and Ken Albala, a professor at University of the Pacific and the prolific author of works on the food culture of the Italian Renaissance.

Publication Date

Summer 2012


Center for International Education and Global Engagement

Document Type