PRINCETON — The Princeton Public Library’s Smithsonian/Museum on Main Street exhibit, “Journey Stories,” straddles both the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, and, since food traditions play such a bit role at this time of year, the library is devoting several nights to programs centering on the dinner table.
The first of these will be a talk by Robert Dirks on the changing foodways of the Midwest at 6:30 p.m. Thursday. Dirks will speak on frontier appetites and immigrant traditions, Depression fare and wartime rationing, fast food and slow food, based on his most recent book, “Come & Get It! McDonaldization and the Disappearance of Local Food from a Central Illinois Community.” The Bureau County Farm Bureau is sponsoring Dirks’ presentation.
Dirks is an emeritus professor of anthropology at Illinois State University. He has conducted research in areas of both food and nutrition. His publications include papers in “American Anthropologist,” “Annual Review of Nutrition,” “Current Anthropology, Journal of Nutrition” and “World Cultures.”
The other Dinner Table Talks will be: Salmagundi: A Feast of Celebrations at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 6, featuring holiday traditions from around the world, as celebrated today in homes and churches in the Princeton area, and a community cookie exchange at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 20. Participants may bring a dozen/take a dozen of their favorite holiday treats and share a story about them, be it a favorite baking memory or how they are part of their family heritage.
The library is at 698 E. Peru St. in Princeton. For more information, call 815-875-1331 or visit www.theprincetonlibrary.org. All programs at the library are free and open to all.