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Middle Eastern food, culture to be discussed during 'Let's Do Lunch!'

RELEASED: Oct. 21, 2010

Let's do Lunch posterEAU CLAIRE — Food, like music, is a universal language. It is full of cultural meaning and is central to the human experience. Drawing from his research and teaching on the geographies of food of the Middle East, Dr. Paul Kaldjian, a University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire associate professor of geography, will provide insight into Middle Eastern people, places and daily life at an Oct. 27 luncheon sponsored by the UW-Eau Claire Alumni Association.

Kaldjian's presentation, titled "Middle Eastern Food and Culture," will be held from noon-1 p.m. at Sweetwaters Restaurant in Eau Claire as part of the Alumni Association's "Let's Do Lunch!" series.

For the past decade, Kaldjian has regularly visited Turkey, where he has studied Istanbul's food systems. Through UW-Eau Claire Continuing Education, he took community members to Turkey in 2007 on a tour of Istanbul's "landscapes of food," and this fall is co-teaching a Continuing Education course with his wife on Middle Eastern cultures and cuisines. Kaldjian also teaches courses in geography and travel writing, geography of the Middle East and North Africa, and geography of food.

Kaldjian holds bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Michigan and a doctorate from the University of Arizona. He currently serves as the secretary and treasurer of the Turkish Studies Association, a private, nonprofit, non-political organization of persons interested in Turkish and Ottoman studies. He is also a member of the Middle East Studies Association.

The speaker series is open to the public. The cost is $10 per session and includes the presentation, buffet, beverage, tax and tip. For more information or to reserve tickets, contact the Alumni Association at alumni@uwec.edu or 715-836-3266.

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KH/DW

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