Celebration of Scholarship, Creativity & Achievement

Lauren Wynne

Assistant Professor of Anthropology

Lauren Wynne, an assistant professor of anthropology, began researching the relationship and cultural impact of food as a part of her dissertation. Now, her first book on the topic, Predictable Pleasures: Food and the Pursuit of Balance in Rural Yucatán, has been published. Wynne’s book was written based on intensive, ethnographic fieldwork in one indigenous Yucatecan community and takes a closer look at the variety of ways that food impacts the lives of everyone from farmers to tourists and how people produce, exchange, consume and talk about food. “I began preliminary research in this community during graduate school intending to study health and healing, but I was struck by the cultural significance of food, including how much people talked about it,” Wynne shared. “I was inspired by the many ways in which people continue to use food to make good lives for themselves: by selectively integrating novel foods into their meals, by maintaining the significance of ceremonially important foods, and by continuing to use meals as opportunities to build and sustain relationships.”