The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture

Volume 7: Foodways

Edited by John T. Edge

Charles Reagan Wilson, General Editor

336 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 50 illus., bibl., index

  • Paperback ISBN: 978-0-8078-5840-0
    Published: September 2007
  • E-book EPUB ISBN: 978-1-4696-1652-0
    Published: February 2014
  • E-book PDF ISBN: 979-8-8908-7757-4
    Published: February 2014

New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture

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When the original Encyclopedia of Southern Culture was published in 1989, the topic of foodways was relatively new as a field of scholarly inquiry. Food has always been central to southern culture, but the past twenty years have brought an explosion in interest in foodways, particularly in the South. This volume marks the first encyclopedia of the food culture of the American South, surveying the vast diversity of foodways within the region and the collective qualities that make them distinctively southern.

Articles in this volume explore the richness of southern foodways, examining not only what southerners eat but also why they eat it. The volume contains 149 articles, almost all of them new to this edition of the Encyclopedia. Longer essays address the historical development of southern cuisine and ethnic contributions to the region's foodways. Topical essays explore iconic southern foods such as MoonPies and fried catfish, prominent restaurants and personalities, and the food cultures of subregions and individual cities. The volume is destined to earn a spot on kitchen shelves as well as in libraries.

Sponsored by the Center for the Study of Southern Culture at the University of Mississippi

About the Author

John T. Edge is director of the Southern Foodways Alliance. He is author of several books, including Fried Chicken: An American Story, and serves as general editor of the book series Cornbread Nation: The Best of Southern Food Writing (volumes 1, 2, and 3 of which are available from the University of North Carolina Press). Charles Reagan Wilson is director of the Center for the Study of Southern Culture at the University of Mississippi and coeditor of the original Encyclopedia of Southern Culture.
For more information about John T. Edge, visit the Author Page.


"A primer on the nation's foremost regional cuisine."--The Courier

"A delicious repast, encompassing the regional specialties of Southern cooking from biscuits to benne, from Coca-Cola cake to stack cakes, from collard greens to red beans and rice."--Georgia Library Quarterly

"The volume offers much food for thought as well as food descriptions sure to make folks hungry."--The Herald-Sun

“This first-of-its-kind study of Southern foodways is intellectual enough for history buffs and entertaining enough for kitchen cooks.”--Delta Magazine

"A delightful and informative read, so much so that it can be read straight through as a highly readable introduction to southern foodways. It of course serves equally well as a reference work."--Western Folklore

"The fact that southern food, real southern food, is thriving in an age of homogenization, globalization, and desensitization is due in no small part to the efforts of John T. Edge and the Southern Foodways Alliance. This volume of The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture is their testament. Anyone even mildly curious about what it is to be southern will find nothing here but the truth. Amen, and pass the okra."--Alton Brown