Kitchen Talks

‘Kitchen Talks’ is a project by thee LIU participants, which is centered on the interaction that takes place around the table when sharing a meal. The project builds on the idea that the sharing of a meal with someone from a different culture can create a frame for positive interaction and dialogue between strangers. ‘Kitchen Talks’, therefore, brought together families from different cultures over a shared meal to create an increased mutual understanding and connection across cultures. 

‘Kitchen Talks’ is developed by the three LIU participants, Cæciliie Philipa Vibe Pedersen, Medine Duvarci and Josefine Kuehnel Albarazi and has the simple aim of connecting families of different religious and ethnic backgrounds around a shared meal. The long-term goal of the project, however, is much more ambitious. As they point out, much research shows that mothers are of key importance in the resilience against radicalisation and in reconciliation processes. Mothers are in a position where they can influence their children in a positive direction. Therefore, utilising the role of women (mothers) and activating their voices constructively has a great potential. ‘Kitchen Talks’ are focusing on bringing together a diverse group of women and their children around a shared meal, which creates a frame in which you can meet the ‘other’ and it opens for a greater understanding of and connection to people of other religions and cultures.

Cæciliie, Medine and Josefine facilitated dinners where a Danish family met and had dinner with a family living in Denmark from another culture – the families which participated did not previously have much contact with people from other cultures. At the dinners each family brought a dish of food to share with the other family – typically the choice of dish was something either traditional for their specific culture or special for the family. A lot of conversation and questions spurred around the choice of food, which kick-started a further conversation, enabling the families in the end to break a lot of stereotypes about ’the other’. Furthermore, the families where able to discuss concrete examples where they had encountered aspects, which they did not understand about the other culture. The meal, thus, served as a good facilitator for a cultural encounter, which gave all participants a further appetite for intercultural meetings.