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Conversation with Grace M. Cho, the Author of Tastes Like War
Tastes Like War

A Korean American daughter's exploration of food and family history, in order to understand her mother's schizophrenia.

Grace M. Cho grew up as the daughter of a white American merchant marine and the Korean bar hostess he met abroad. They were one of few immigrants in a xenophobic small town during the Cold War, where identity was politicized by everyday details—language, cultural references, memories, and food. When Grace was fifteen, her dynamic mother experienced the onset of schizophrenia, a condition that would continue and evolve for the rest of her life.
Part food memoir, part sociological investigation, Tastes Like War is a hybrid text about a daughter’s search through intimate and global history for the roots of her mother’s schizophrenia. In her mother’s final years, Grace learned to cook dishes from her mother’s childhood in order to invite the past into the present, and to hold space for her mother’s multiple voices at the table. And through careful listening over these shared meals, Grace discovered not only the things that broke the brilliant, complicated woman who raised her—but also the things that kept her alive.

Grace M. Cho (Professor of Sociology and Anthropology at the College of Staten Island, CUNY; Author of 'Tastes Like War' (Feminist Press, 2021))

Chair: Hae Yeon Choo (Director of the Centre for the Study of Korea and Associate Professor of Sociology, University of Toronto)

Organized by the Centre for the Study of Korea and co-sponsored by the Dr. David Chu Program in Asia-Pacific Studies at the Asian Institute, the Department of Sociology, the Women and Gender Studies Institute, the Department of English, and the Centre for the Study of the United States at the Munk School, University of Toronto

Sep 30, 2022 02:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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