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Recommended book. Sitopia by Carolyn Steel

❉ Sitopia: How Food Can Save the World.

Books that every women should read.

We live in a world shaped by food, a Sitopia ( sitos – food; topos – place). Food, and how we search for and consume it, has defined our human journey. From our foraging hunter-gatherer ancestors to the enormous appetites of modern cities, food has shaped our bodies and homes, our politics and trade, and our climate. Whether it's the daily decision of what to eat, or the monopoly of industrial food production, food touches every part of our world. But by forgetting its value, we have drifted into a way of life that threatens our planet and ourselves.

Yet food remains central to addressing the predicaments and opportunities of our urban, digital age. Drawing on insights from philosophy, history, architecture, literature, politics and science, as well as stories of the farmers, designers and economists who are remaking our relationship with food, Sitopia is a provocative and exhilarating vision for change, and how to thrive on our crowded, overheating planet. In her inspiring and deeply thoughtful new book Carolyn Steel, points the way to a better future.

Who is this #remarkablewoman ?

Carolyn Steel MA Cantab, Dip. Arch RIBA

​Carolyn Steel is a leading thinker on food and cities. She is the author of the award-winning Hungry City: How Food Shapes Our Lives (2008) and Sitopia: How Food Can Save the World (2020). Her concept of sitopia, or food-place (from the Greek sitos, food + topos, place) has gained broad recognition across a wide range of fields in design, ecology, academia and the arts.

Carolyn studied architecture at Cambridge University with Dalibor Vesely, Peter Carl and Eric Parry and subsequently taught with all three before running her own design studios at Cambridge and at London Metropolitan University. In 1989, she joined Cullum and Nightingale Architects (now Kilburn Nightingale Architects), becoming a non-executive director in 2005. Carolyn has completed several major buildings with the practice, including the Embassy Theatre for the Central School of Speech and Drama. In 1995-6, Carolyn was a scholar at the British School at Rome, where she studied the everyday life of the Rione S. Angelo (the fish market and Jewish quarter), publishing her work as The Mundane Order of the City in the Cambridge Architecture Journal Scroope.

In 1998, Carolyn became the inaugural Studio Director of the London School of Economics Cities Programme. She began researching the relationship between food and cities in 2000, and from 2002-2012 gave a lecture series on Food and the City at Cambridge University School of Architecture, the first of its kind. In 2008 she published her first book, Hungry City, which won the Royal Society of Literature’s Jerwood Award for Non-Fiction and was chosen as a BBC Food Programme book of the year. In 2009, The Ecologist magazine profiled Carolyn as a ‘21st Century Visionary' and her 2009 TED talk, given at the first TEDGlobal in Oxford, has gained more than one million views.

From 2010-13, Carolyn was a visiting lecturer and researcher at the Rural Sociology Department of Wageningen University in the Netherlands. In international demand as a speaker, she has lectured widely on food and the city, including at the Slow Food University of Gastronomic Sciences in Pollenzo, Italy and the Harvard Graduate School of Architecture. In addition to numerous appearances in the UK and abroad, Carolyn has collaborated with a number of cities and institutions including the Oxford Food Symposium, of which she is a trustee, Stroom den Haag (The Hague), The City of Groningen and the MAS Museum in Antwerp, where her work inspired the new permanent exhibition, Antwerp à la Carte.

Sitopia may sound like what we're all supposed to be doing to keep safe from Covid-19... the pandemic has meant, at least in the short term, a radical reassessment of what governments might do for their citizens so that they may live a 'decent' life. Many people have been forced to alter fundamentally the way they source and consume food, prompting speculation of more lasting change ahead...

Erica Wagner, Financial Times.

Pic Carolyn Steel

Curator Munllonch


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