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Food and Holiness: Cooking as a Sacred Act among Middle-Eastern Jewish Women
Susan Starr Sered
Vol. 61, No. 3 (Jul., 1988), pp. 129-139
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3317789
Page Count: 11
You can always find the topics here!Topics: Jewish foods, Judaism, Food preparation, Jewish rituals, Cooking, Passover, Food, Jewish peoples, Foodways, Women
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This article explores the religiosity of elderly Middle Eastern Jewish women in Jerusalem. For these women the 'sacred' is fully embedded within the 'profane.' Their lives center around networks of interpersonal relationships that traditional kosher food preparation strengthens and sacralizes. The women see Jewish identity, tradition, law, and holidays in terms of feeding others. Many of their foods embody potent Jewish symbols, and the rituals of food preparation imbue their everyday domestic work with holiness. It is argued that the type of diffuse religiosity practiced by these women represents a major mode of human religious experience.
Anthropological Quarterly © 1988 The George Washington University Institute for Ethnographic Research