Food subsumes the air I breathe, the soil that grounds me, the pain I feel, my safe-place.

I just recently finished my Master’s degree in Cognitive Sciences where I adopted a specific focus on Food Studies in my thesis called “Delicate Thoughts: A Phenomenology of Food-Cravings”.

My personal passion and interest in food grounds in the rich connections to the very first experiences with concepts of fear, fragility and existentiality during my childhood and years of adolescence that were luckily outweighed by feelings of ease, safety and self-realization in latter years. By a fortunate turn of events I grew up to see food as something very precious and formative. Especially during this previous year of my Master’s studies I learned to consciously share and cherish those experiences and their impact on my life.

Subsequently, I realised the continuum of impressions, emotions and thoughts that the topic of food carries for me; amongst joy and agony there are many other facets that were a blindspot to me until I started to share my experience. Thus, others inspired this journey through their comforting, perspective-changing views. It set off an avalanche of questions, leaving me in trembling wonder what food actually means, what properties of experience make me as well as others identify something as food. Ultimately, this originated my urge to investigate how other people experience food, how these thoughts are elicited, perceived, imagined, integrated; or from the perspective of a cognitive scientist: how they are cognized.

This blog attempts to give some impressions on what drives me as an individual, a friend, a researcher.

For further info contact me via fransisca.hok-eng.tan(at)univie.ac.at