We are very pleased to announce the recipients of the Spring 2015 History in Action Project Awards (HAPA). The following projects promise to contribute in a substantive and long-term manner to historical thinking in public life, while being engaged with their individual research missions.
Andre Kobayashi Deckrow follows up on his previous contribution to the South El Monte Arts Posse (SEMAP) effort, “East of East: Mapping Community Narratives in South El Monte and El Monte,” with further research into the Japanese American (Nikkei) farming community that flourished in the San Gabriel Valley prior to World War II. In partnership with the Japanese American National Museum (JANM) in Los Angeles and their ongoing Discover Nikkei Project, Deckrow will conduct oral histories with elderly members of Nikkei community, most of whom were displaced by 1942. His proposal also includes a provision for a public event focusing on the history and legacy of segregated public schooling in the community. Finally, he will visit history classes at Mountain View High School to discuss the pre-war experiences and wartime displacement and internment of the area’s Japanese American community.
Alma Igra is funded to develop an online platform with a focus on culinary and food history, with a blog entitled “History of the World in One Thousand Dishes.” Her project aims to collect, contextualize, and reconstruct historical recipes from the end of the eighteenth century to the present. Her blog will feature one dish or historical cookbook every week, accompanied by photographs and archival references, as well as materials shared by and curated for readers.
Mookie Kideckel will be working as a research assistant for the Museum of Food and Drink (MOFAD), New York’s first food museum, as they develop their mobile app exhibit, MOFAD City. This app will allow users to turn the surrounding city into a food museum. MOFAD City is envisioned as a digital tool that curates a culturally rich community of restaurants, vendors, markets, and food producers, and groups them into tours that explore a variety of topics in both local and global history. Tasting recommendations will be accompanied by audio narration from distinguished curators, as well as by interviews, oral histories, and archival and contemporary photographs. Kideckel’s research will focus specifically on a tour of historic Jewish food on the Lower East Side.