Aboriginal Food "The Colonial Impact On Indigenous Thesis

Length: 4 pages Sources: 5 Subject: Anthropology Type: Thesis Paper: #92294481 Related Topics: Indigenous People, Food Politics, Nutritional Foods, Urban Geography
Excerpt from Thesis :

Aboriginal Food

"The colonial impact on indigenous people's food practices was cataclysmic and its effects still reverberate today."[footnoteRef:1] Food has therefore become one of the most important issues for aboriginal people, on a practical and immediate level and also on a global, political, and policy level. Causes of aboriginal food insecurity include prejudicial or ethnocentric food policies and programs; disruption of indigenous communities and lifestyles; poverty; and rapid dietary changes due to social migration and other factors. Effects of aboriginal food insecurity include major public health problems; exacerbation of poverty; and the ongoing dismantling of valuable societies, cultures, and social institutions. Geography and food are practically inseparable, as food resources are an element of space and place. Politics and food are also inextricably entwined. The interaction between people and the land creates a multidimensional landscape revealing the ways space, place, and people interact. Politics and human rights issues continue to impact food diversity, food traditions, and food security among the indigenous people of Canada. [1: Foley, Wendy. "Tradition and Change in Urban Indigenous Food Practices." Postcolonial Studies. (2005) 8:1, p. 25]

Ethnocentric politics and policy has impacted food diversity among aboriginal people, often increasing food diversity but at the expense of health, sustainability, and cultural integrity. Food diversity is defined as consuming "probably 20-30 biologically different distinct foods over the course of a week."[footnoteRef:2] Ensuring food diversity is especially important among aging people, whose nutritional needs require nutrient-dense foods.[footnoteRef:3] Food diversity is "contingent on biodiversity"...

...

While urbanization "distances people from the origin of their food," it can also ensure greater availability and adequacy of food " irrespective of season, climate or distant conflict."[footnoteRef:5] When crafting public policy related to food diversity among Canadian aboriginal people, non-traditional approaches to diet and nutrition have been imposed on indigenous people with relatively poor results. Thus, it is important to consider issues such as traditional foods, diets, and food cultures. Ethnocentrism places an undue burden on indigenous communities to envision an artificial concept of food diversity that ignores the intimate relationship between space, place, and people. [2: Wahlqvist, Mark L. "Diversification in Indigenous and Ethnic Food Culture." Diet Diversification and Health Promotion. Forum Nutr. (Ed.) I. Elmadfa. Basel, Karger, 2005:57. Pp 52-61. Online.] [3: Wahlqvist, Mark L. "Diversification in Indigenous and Ethnic Food Culture." Diet Diversification and Health Promotion. Forum Nutr. (Ed.) I. Elmadfa. Basel, Karger, 2005:57. Pp 52-61. Online.] [4: Wahlqvist, Mark L. "Diversification in Indigenous and Ethnic Food Culture." Diet Diversification and Health Promotion. Forum Nutr. (Ed.) I. Elmadfa. Basel, Karger, 2005:57., p. 52. ] [5: Wahlqvist, Mark L. "Diversification in Indigenous and Ethnic Food Culture." Diet Diversification and Health Promotion. Forum Nutr. (Ed.) I. Elmadfa. Basel, Karger, 2005:57, p. 52]

Therefore, it is critical to define, analyze, and respect traditional food, traditional food cultures, and traditional food practices. Traditional food is defined as "being composed of items from the local, natural environment that are culturally accessible."[footnoteRef:6] The term "anthropological nutrition" is a helpful one for re-conceptualizing the nature of nutrition and food policy among indigenous people who do not need to consume items like arugula or brown rice.[footnoteRef:7] Anthropological nutrition also takes into consideration issues like food sharing, harvesting, ceremonial feasting, and other rituals. Among many aboriginal people, traditional diets that have sustained cultures for centuries or longer do not resemble the modern urban Canadian diet with its access to foodstuffs like lettuce greens or whole grains. Cultural practices related to food also differ. Food policies and programs also need to be locally valid and locally relevant[footnoteRef:8] [6: Kuhnlein, Harriet V. Receveur, Oliver. "Dietary Change and Traditional Food Systems of Indigenous Peoples." Annual Reviews, Nutrition. 1996:16, p. 417.] [7: Kuhnlein, Harriet V. Receveur, Oliver. "Dietary Change and Traditional Food Systems of Indigenous Peoples." Annual Reviews, Nutrition. 1996:16, p. 418] [8: Wadden, Joanne. "De-linking From Dependency; Indigenous Food Sovereignty Brings Together Land, Food…

Sources Used in Documents:

References

Damman, Siri. Barth Edie, Wenche. Kuhnlein V Harriet. "Indigenous Peoples' Nutrition Transition in a Right To Food Perspective." Science Direct. Food Policy (2008): 33, 135-55. Online.

FAO (2013). The right to food and indigenous peoples. Retrieved online: http://www.fao.org/righttofood/publications/publications-detail/en/c/49285/

Foley, Wendy. "Tradition and Change in Urban Indigenous Food Practices." Postcolonial Studies. (2005) 8:1. Pp 25-44. Online.

Kuhnlein, Harriet V. Receveur, Oliver. "Dietary Change and Traditional Food Systems of Indigenous Peoples." Annual Reviews, Nutrition. 1996:16. Pp. 417-42. Re-circulated by the University of Manitoba 08/29/08. Online.


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