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AFS Foodways Section Announces Recipient of Sue Samuelson Award

Thursday, May 5, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Shannon K. Larson

The Foodways Section of the American Folklore Society has named Rachel Hopkin the 2016 recipient of its prestigious Sue Samuelson Award for Foodways Scholarship for her paper, “The Way of the Croissant.”

The Sue Samuelson Award is given each year by the Foodways Section to recognize outstanding student work that is based on original fieldwork or research and that uses current folkloric approaches to the analysis and interpretation of foodways. Entries are judged according to the following criteria: sensitivity to the people and culture being described, depth of analysis into the food tradition, ability to engage the reader, and quality of writing. The prize comes with a monetary award as well as publication in Digest: An Interdisciplinary Study of Food and Foodways

The 2016 committee found Rachel Hopkin’s “The Way of the Croissant” exceptional. Committee members noted that Hopkin’s paper had good depth and breadth of analysis, while maintaining focus and an inviting style. They also noted an appreciation for her discussion of traditionalizing, the historic-geographic method, and intertextuality with respect to the croissant. The Foodways Section is looking forward to Hopkin’s progress in her ongoing croissant research. 

Rachel Hopkin began her career as a radio producer in various music departments at the BBC in the UK. She then moved to Argentina and worked on an independent basis for broadcasters around the world. In 2010, she settled in the United States and two years later earned an MA in Folk Studies at Western Kentucky University. She is currently working on her PhD at The Ohio State University. 

The American Folklore Society, founded in 1888, is an association of people who study folklore and communicate knowledge about folklore throughout the world. More than 2,200 members and subscribers are scholars, teachers, and libraries at colleges and universities; professionals in arts and cultural organizations; and community members studying and conserving folk traditions. For more information, please contact Lorraine Walsh Cashman, Associate Director, at

For further information about the Sue Samuelson Award, please contact Katrina Wynn ( or Lacey Cornell (, co-conveners of the Foodways Section. 

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