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In preparation for the University of Oregon's "Foodways in China" conference, May 8-10, Francesca Bray, a professor of social anthropology at the University of Edinburgh, discusses the history of rice in China and its real and symbolic place as "the Chinese staple." Professor Bray is one of the most important and path-breaking scholars in the field of the History of Technology, with numerous publications including Agriculture (Part 2 of the section Biology and Biological Technology in Joseph Needham's series Science and Civilisation in China (1984, Cambridge University Press) and The Rice Economies: Technology and Development in Asian Societies (1994, University of California Press), a study on Rice in Heian Culture (Journal of Anthropology, 2005) as well as studies on genetically modified crops and on sustainable landscapes. In her public lecture, she will speak to the ways in which a foodways focus opens new questions and perspectives with regard to our understanding of Chinese culture and society. Cosponsored by the Center for Asian and Pacific Studies Jeremiah Speaker Fund and the UO Confucius Institute for Global China Studies

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