Doctoral Student Spotlights

Scott Alves Barton

Food Studies

I chose this Doctoral Program Because:
The Food Studies program at Steinhardt appeared to be and has so far been a perfect fit for me. I chose it for the caliber of the faculty and the breadth of the program, which has Food and Culture and Systems tracks. Additionally, I needed a multi-disciplinary program which would allow me to pair my focus in Food Studies with my inquiries into the culinary legacies of Atlantic and Indian Ocean slave trades as relates to the former Lusophone colonial empire. My advisor and other professors have knowledge in aspects of these areas and my ability to insert myself into the departments of Africana Studies, Anthropology, History and Performance Studies has proved invaluable as a tool for academic growth in my area. Finally, I have proposed to my professors that I enroll in the Culture & Media program in the Anthro and Film departments since my work often deals with the performative or ritualistic aspects of culinary culture. The possibility of creating cultural documentaries as an integral part of my dissertation process is a unique advantage which I am able to realize here at Steinhardt. I am one happy camper.
One of the things I enjoy doing in New York City when I'm not being a doctoral student:
Being with family, engaging in cultural activities, eating a diverse variety of foods and resting
My favorite place to get coffee or eat around NYU:
Orens, Grumpy, WaWa, Marumi and Aki Sushi, Pegu Social Club, Annisa, Bleecker Street Pizza
Focus of my research of scholarship:
Secular and sacred foods arising our to the colonial Atlantic/Indian ocean slave system
I'm interested in this topic because:
It represents an aspect of the formation of cultural and racial identity which is vital in terms of historiography and current daily culinary practice
Academic or other experience that most influenced my choice of doctoral study:
Investigative research and personal scholarship revolving around the roots and inspirations of Southern food culture, membership on the Board of Directors of Southern Foodways Alliance
Research or scholar I most admire:
Several - Jessica Harris, Judith Carney, Aisha Khan, Stuart Hall, Charles Daniel Dawson, etc.
Professor who has influenced me the most:
Renato Rosaldo, Aisha Khan, Amy Bentley, Krishnendu Ray, David Ludden, Fabio Parasecoli, Karen Kupperman, and not in any particular order
Scholarly presentation of my work I'm most proud of:
Navigating Taste in the City of Women: Macanese Cultural Identity
Favorite course as a doctoral student:
Cultural Studies, Racing Diaspora, Research in Globalization, International Cuisines
What I like most about being part of a community of doctoral students:
We are a collegial, supportive, and nurturing cohort - not a competitive one.

Background Information

Where you grew up:
Norwalk, CT
Career Goals:
Teaching, writing, researching, documentary filmmaking
Honors, Awards, and Achievements:
First round of Ebony Magazine's top 25 African American chefs, winner of a fellowship to Fundacao Sacatar, Itaparica Island, Bahia Brazil, Interviewed on Brazilian TV for my field work, selected to be in the School for American Chefs at Beringer Vineyards with Madeleine Kamman, voted onto the Board of Diretors of the Southern Food Alliance, 2003-2009, presenter at the National Ethnic Studies Conference, Association for the Study of Food and Culture Conference and the Society for the Study of Southern Literature Conference, included in the Joselyn Diabetes cookbook, Southern Foodways Community Cookbook and Tavis Smiley's Pass it Down Cookbook, teacher for AIWF's Day's of Taste and City Harvest inner city culinary programs, celebrated my father's 90th birthday with him before he passed this year.
Other professional or service activities:
Member of - Culinary Historians of NY, Southern Foodways Alliance, Slow Food, culinary consultant, teacher at ICE culinary school, and various local community food service initiatives.