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HIST 2045-01: A Material and Cultural History of Food in China


Finding Books & Articles

This course studies historical continuity and changes of dietary traditions and culinary practices in China. We will examine how certain foods gave possibilities to and conditioned China's cultural formation and, in return, how food and ways of eating are

Scholarly Research and the History of Food

For this course, your research requires you to address both the scientific and cultural side of food. After picking from the list of acceptable food groups, you will need to find a selection of scientific scholarship in order to understand what you are looking at.

Once you understand what you are examining, you should then consider a cultural angles of the food specifically in reference to China. To do so, consider who grew, cooked, or consumed the food. Think about how and in what context (e.g., for Chinese New Year) they did so. You will not need to address each question, but consider them as starting points.

To find the answer to both components of your project, you should

  1. Look for books on your topic;
  2. Use both scientific (e.g., SCOPUS) and social science/humanities (e.g., JSTOR) databases to find scholarly journal articles and e-Books;
  3. Look for primary sources connecting your commodity to Chinese history (e.g., wheat in 1960s China). 

Use this page to find the books and journal articles. Use the "Commodities and Food Stuffs" tab to find suggestions on relevant primary source collections.

What's on This Page by Type

    Books: Find & Request from BC & Beyond

    Your local libraries have excellent monographs and anthologies located in O'Neill library as well as through the BC libraries portal. Try searching for books (only books) through the WorldCat library system to see if we have what you need. If we don't, you can order material through Interlibrary Loan (ILL).

    WorldCat Catalog

    Books Only   All Formats  

    Journal and eBook Database Recommendations

    For a selection of excellent journals and some e-books on various topics in global history, we recommend a few databases. Remember to explore these database "advanced search" options for date and other modifiers before you run your searches.

    Additional Recommendations

    Journals and e-Books for the Sciences

    Journal Recommendations


    Peer Review Check

    Need to check whether a journal article is peer reviewed? Check out Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory. Look up your journal's name and if Ulrichsweb includes a Symbol denoting peer review status symbol, you know it's been peer reviewed (also called "refereed"). 

    Need a text Boston College does not have? Request it through Interlibrary Loan (ILL).