A World of Sweets in Washington State

From bienenstich to bánh xu xê, marzipan to mochi, the diverse range of sweets we enjoy across Washington state reveals much about our shared history and culture. Each of these sweets tells a story: Ingredients illustrate trade routes and trends, recipes record migration patterns and special forms point to special occasions. This mouth-watering and thought-provoking talk will invite us to savor the ways in which sweets show how individuals and communities celebrate, adapt and interact. By showing how our own familiar favorites correspond to and differ from examples in other communities, anthropologist Julia Harrison will encourage a deep level of understanding about the ways in which sweet foods shape our relationships and reveal our priorities. This talk will spur us to make the leap from “Yum!” to “Hmm … ”

About Julia Harrison

Julia Harrison is a trained anthropologist and avid traveler for whom all roads lead to sweets. She has traced Turkish delight to Istanbul’s oldest lokum store, elbowed into a crowded cafe for London’s best Portuguese-style egg custard tarts and experienced the perfect watermelon during an accidental lunch at a Japanese temple. Harrison is currently creating an online multimedia map of bakeries, desserts and candy-makers around the Puget Sound, and will curate a 2013 exhibition for the Wing Luke Museum on Asian sweets in the Pacific Northwest. She received a master’s in applied anthropology from Macquarie University and did two years of additional study on material culture theory and methodology at University College London.

Harrison currently lives in Seattle.

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