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Food History

The Food History Seminar provides an inclusive setting in which food historians, academics and experts working in related fields can come together to discuss their research.

Online-via Zoom.
Thursday, 17:30-18:30 UK / 12:30-13:30 US EST
Kelly A. Spring (Marine Corps University), Matt Phillpott and Charlie Taverner (Trinity College Dublin)

About the convenors

Kelly A. Spring (Marine Corps University)
Kelly A. Spring, PhD., is a lecturer of food studies, women’s history, World War II, and gender studies. Currently, she works as the Women, Peace and Security Subject Matter Expert with the Marine Corps University. Her current project, “SPAM: A Global History”, traces the complex and long-lasting connections between SPAM and war. As part of this project, she spoke on the BBC Radio 4 - The Food Programme, SPAM: food + war + memory in a can about the enduring role of SPAM in Britain and Asia. In 2017, Kelly founded the IHR Food History Seminar.

Matt Phillpott 
Matt Phillpott is an early modern historian and learning technologist. With a PhD from the University of Sheffield, Matt has developed interests in the transmission of knowledge in printed form, first examining how religious and historical ideas and knowledge was transmitted during the English Reformation and more recently in how knowledge has been transmitted in printed materials on bees and beekeeping. In 2018 he published The Reformation of England’s Past: John Foxe and the revision of history in the late sixteenth century with Routledge and he currently showcases his works on beekeeping on his website Early Modern Bees.  Matt is also a certified member of the Association for Learning Technology (ALT) and an associate fellow of the HE Academy. He can be found on Twitter @mphillpott.

Charlie Taverner (Trinity College Dublin)
Charlie Taverner is a historian of food and cities, and currently a research fellow at Trinity College Dublin, as part of the FoodCult project. His first book, Street Food: Hawkers and the History of London, will be published by Oxford University Press in January 2023. 

About the seminar

Launched at the IHR in summer 2017, the Food History Seminar provides an inclusive setting in which food historians, academics and experts working in related fields can come together to discuss their research. We wish to encourage the participation of all researchers in the seminar, including established academics, independent scholars, museum professionals and postgraduates.

We welcome papers covering topics across all historical periods and geographical locations. To better serve the historical community and distribute research on food history as widely as possible, nationally and internationally, we will hold our 2020-2021 meetings on zoom. Presenters will give a 30-minute paper with 20 minutes for discussion afterwards. Joint Sessions will also be held with two presenters, each giving a 20-minute paper followed by discussion. Meetings will run for one hour. Session will be held on Thursdays from 17:30-18:30 UK Time / 12:30-13:30 US EST. Speakers and attendees will be allowed into seminar meetings 20 minutes prior to the start of each session.

These meetings are open to all and free to attend. But a booking via the seminar’s IHR webpage is required to secure a spot and receive an email with the zoom link. Details about our schedule and presenters’ abstracts can be found below.

The meetings will be recorded and will be available to view soon after each session has finished. Past seminars can be viewed in the “Archives” section of our website

For further enquiries please contact: or follow us on Twitter: @IHR_FoodHist.

Recordings of this terms seminars are now available on the IHR YouTube channel.