Feasting and Fasting: Religious food practices in interaction

Venue: International Guest House, Auf der Papenburg 14, 44801 Bochum


A pdf-file of the reader for the workshop can be obtained before and during the conference from Dorothea Weltecke.

In all religious cultures food plays an important role. Food practices integrate communities, and they exclude others or even polemicize against them. In this sense, food is always an element of religious interaction. Strategies of purity and penance are both connected with eating and fasting. Persecuting institutions, like the inquisition in the Latin Church, were keen on identifying food practices as a sign of religious deviance. Eating and fasting habits are constantly changing, and they do not necessarily agree with the norms. On the contrary, historical and cultural conditions, interreligious contacts and other factors contribute to the transformation of rituals and customs.
The purpose of the workshop is a comparative debate on the primary sources provided by the active participants, which should foster the interdiscipliniary understanding of different religions and their food. The workshop will develop comparative and systematic categories for further research.



Prof. Dr. Dorothea Weltecke