Eating Archaeology: Experimenting with Food in Public Outreach

Ilaria Patania, Yitzchak Jaffe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Public engagement is becoming increasingly common practice in archaeological projects, capitalizing on the interactions of field archaeologists with local communities as well as with the descendants of the people under study, in a variety of ways: from the use of social media to engaging the local public with onsite presentations and exhibitions. However, public engagement efforts are often less robust when archaeologists return to their home institutions, with most of the researchers’ time and energies spent fulfilling their academic duties. Interactions between archaeologists and their local communities — those closer to their home institutions — are often minimal, creating insular university departments. To secure a future as a vibrant, relevant field of research, archaeology must develop greater interest and skill in engaging with its neighbours both within and outside the academy. The study of past meals and foodways provides an exceptional avenue for public outreach, which in turn is further enhanced through fruitful collaboration among various university departments and museums. Here we present the results of the multidisciplinary outreach project ‘Eating Archaeology’, designed with the intention of building collaborations across disciplines and a new narrative with which to engage the public.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-68
Number of pages14
JournalPublic Archaeology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2 Jan 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


  • archaeology of food
  • archaeology of the senses
  • experimental archaeology
  • public engagement
  • public outreach

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology


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