Southern Food Expert and Author to Speak on Feb. 25

One of America’s most prominent food writers and an expert on Southern cuisine, John T. Edge, will speak on the Macon campus on Wednesday, Feb. 25 at 7 p.m. in Newton Chapel.  His lecture, “Cornpone and Buttermilk: Rethinking Southern Culinary Icons,” is free and open to the public.


“John T. grew up in Gray and Macon, so he cut his teeth, so to speak, on the foods of Middle Georgia,” said Dr. David Davis, assistant professor of English and organizer of the event.  “From here, he has gone on to become the foremost expert on the foods of the entire region.  If any magazine or TV show wants an expert comment on Southern food, whether it be fried chicken or pot likker, they call John T.”


Dr. Davis invited Edge to speak at Mercer as part of Davis’ Southern foodways class.  The course examines the origins and practice of Southern food from a critical perspective.


Edge, called “the William Faulkner of Southern food” by the Miami Herald, is the director of the Southern Foodways Alliance and regularly writes for the Atlanta Journal Constitution and Oxford American.  He is also the author of A Gracious Plenty: Recipes and Recollections from the American South and Southern Belly: The Ultimate Food Lover’s Companion to the South. 


“John T. writes about Southern food not only with the zeal of a connoisseur, but also with the critical mind of a scholar,” said Davis.  “He uncovers the layers beneath the myth and marketing to expose the origins and the traditions that established Southern cooking as a unique cuisine.”


Edge has also appeared on numerous television shows, including Iron Chef and CBS Early Show, and he frequently contributes to NPR’s All Things Considered.

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