Letter from the editor
There are infinite ways in which we can find difference with our neighbors, but if there is one thing that has the power to connect everyone, everywhere, it’s food. Aside from food being an integral part of sustaining life, it is also a site through which people can bond and come together. As we settle into the holiday season, this warmth found in community and camaraderie inspired the direction behind Issue 12 of Embodied: The Food Issue. The Food Issue highlights food’s place in our daily lives, the numerous areas in which it appears in art, culture, politics, and film, and the ways in which we are constantly evolving our relationships with food in order for it to be a healthier and more sustainable one.
Kirsten Lootens leads the discussion on sustainability with her piece on Brooklyn Grange, the world’s leading soil rooftop farming company and sustainability center. Lootens argues for the important roles cities play in combating climate change, a message that is amplified in her piece “Freeganism.” In “Freeganism,” Lootens addresses the issue of food waste by detailing her experience on a freegan tour, which she found to be rewarding not just personally but environmentally.
Jordana Bornstein introduces many of us to Emma’s Torch, the Carroll Gardens restaurant that is going beyond their menu to create a positive culinary experience. They are providing life-changing opportunities for refugees arriving in New York City with their mission to ‘harness the power of the culinary industry to help refugees build new lives in their new communities.’
In “Brevard,” a stunning recounting of writer Kayla Herrera-Daya’s raw experience with eating disorders, Daya poignantly documents the memories and emotions attached to family trips to visit her older sister at Brevard, a North Carolina rehabilitation house. Daya wistfully underscores the complex relationship one can have with food as it pertains to self-image and caring for loved ones.
And Alexa Epstein gives a powerful tribute to Anthony Bourdain, the widely beloved chef who inspired us to be curious, who used his passion for food and adventure as an exciting vehicle through which to teach us that we live in a great, vast world worth travelling and learning about and that we are all more alike than we are different.
In a country where approximately 40 million people struggle with hunger, food is also a privilege. In the spirit of coming together, below is a list of New York City food banks and organizations accepting donations to warm up the holiday season for those in need.
Cheers and on behalf of the EMBODIED fam, have a safe and happy holidays :)
"Eat Your Beats"
By Jenzia Burgos