Professor Ken Albala, Ph.D.

Professor Ken Albala
  • University of the Pacific
  • Columbia University
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It may seem monomaniacal, but I teach about food, I write about food, I love to cook, I read about food for leisure–what better recipe is there for happiness than to make work and play completely seamless?

Dr. Ken Albala is Professor of History at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California, where he teaches food history and the history of early modern Europe. He is also a Visiting Professor at Boston University, where he teaches an advanced food history course in the gastronomy program. He earned an M.A. in History from Yale University and a Ph.D. in History from Columbia University. Professor Albala is the author or editor of 16 books on food. His four-volume Food Cultures of the World Encyclopedia was published in 2011. He is also coeditor of the journal Food, Culture & Society and general editor of the series AltaMira Studies in Food and Gastronomy, for which he has written a textbook titled Three World Cuisines: Italian, Mexican, Chinese, which won the 2013 Gourmand World Cookbook Award for Best Foreign Cuisine Book in the World. In 2009, he won the Faye and Alex G. Spanos Distinguished Teaching Award at the University of the Pacific. Other books include Eating Right in the Renaissance; Food in Early Modern Europe; Cooking in Europe, 1250-1650; The Banquet: Dining in the Great Courts of Late Renaissance Europe; and the award-winning Beans: A History. He also coedited Food and Faith in Christian Culture and A Cultural History of Food in the Renaissance, among other books.

Testimonials

"Professor Albala offers insight into the history of food that is presented in a highly easy-to-appreciate manner. His enthusiasm and genial style stimulates additional thinking and makes for quite a fascinating subject."

18 Courses and Sets

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18 Courses and Sets

  1. Food: A Cultural Culinary History Sale

    Food: A Cultural Culinary History

    Ken Albala
    4.6 out of 5
    87% of reviewers would recommend this product
    (108)
    Save up to $305.00 Starting at $49.95 $374.95 $49.95$374.95
    The drive to obtain food has been a major catalyst across all of history, from prehistoric times to the present. For this reason, food offers a deeply insightful lens on human history, shedding new light on the evolution of social and political systems, on cultural interactions, economic empires, human migrations, and more. Now, in Food: A Cultural Culinary History, take an enthralling journey into the human...
  2. Special Collection - 36 Big Ideas Collection

    Special Collection - 36 Big Ideas

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    2.8 out of 5
    30% of reviewers would recommend this product
    (13)
    Starting at $199.95 Starting at $199.95 $199.95 $199.95$199.95
    The Great Courses has introduced millions of lifelong learners to some of the biggest ideas out there. Enjoy a collection of 36 lectures specially curated from some of our most popular courses and get a fresh learning experience in a wide range of disciplines. Religious writings that may have been forged; a universal template of world myths; the science of tasting colors—Join us for an intriguing tour of big ideas!
  3. Special Collection - The Joy of Ancient History Collection

    Special Collection - The Joy of Ancient History

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    3.9 out of 5
    62% of reviewers would recommend this product
    (8)
    Starting at $199.95 Starting at $199.95 $199.95 $199.95$199.95
    For years, The Great Courses has taken you on stirring explorations of our ancient roots. The Joy of Ancient History is an insightful collection of 36 lectures curated from our most popular ancient history courses. Guided by our highly rated professors, hopscotch around the world to experience the fascinating variety that ancient history offers: from great heroes and epic battles to lost civilizations and beyond.
  4. (Set) Culinary History & Nutrition Made Clear Set

    (Set) Culinary History & Nutrition Made Clear

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $639.90 Starting at $639.90 $749.90 $639.90$749.90
    Discover more about what you eat and why you eat it in this two-course set. Making good food taste good is sometimes a challenge. Nutrition Made Clear explores the fundamentals of food and nutrition, with the goal to help you easily integrate healthy eating into your life everyday. Hungry for more? Learn about the impact of food, meals, and dining on our social and economic cultures across history with Food: A...
  5. (Set)  Everyday Gourmet: Spices & Food: A Cultural Culinary Set

    (Set) Everyday Gourmet: Spices & Food: A Cultural Culinary

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $414.90 Starting at $414.90 $474.90 $414.90$474.90
  6. (Set) Food: A Cultural Culinary History & The Everyday Gourmet: Rediscovering the Lost Art of Cooking  Set

    (Set) Food: A Cultural Culinary History & The Everyday Gourmet: Rediscovering the Lost Art of Cooking

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $554.90 Starting at $554.90 $644.90 $554.90$644.90
    Indulge your love of food with this deliciously informative course duo. In Food: A Cultural Culinary History, you'll travel the world discovering fascinating food lore and culture of all regions and eras. In The Everyday Gourmet: Rediscovering the Lost Art of Cooking, you'll join a seasoned Culinary Institute of America chef-instructor as he demonstrates all the foundational culinary skills you need to turn out...
  7. (Set)  Food: Culinary History & Science of Natural Healing Set

    (Set) Food: Culinary History & Science of Natural Healing

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $534.90 Starting at $534.90 $629.90 $534.90$629.90
  8. (Set) Food: A Cultural Culinary History & The Everyday Guide to Wine  Set

    (Set) Food: A Cultural Culinary History & The Everyday Guide to Wine

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $534.90 Starting at $534.90 $629.90 $534.90$629.90
    Develop a greater appreciation for food and wine with this captivating pair of courses. First, in Food: A Cultural Culinary History, you'll travel the world discovering fascinating food lore and culture of all regions and eras. Then, in The Everyday Guide to Wine, you'll explore the language of wine; look behind the scenes at the process of winemaking; survey the tastes and aromas of various wines; tour the world's...
  9. (Set)  Everyday Gourmet: Baking & Food: A Culinary History Set

    (Set) Everyday Gourmet: Baking & Food: A Culinary History

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $414.90 Starting at $414.90 $474.90 $414.90$474.90
  10. (Set) Food: A Cultural Culinary History & The Other Side of History: Daily Life in the Ancient World   Set

    (Set) Food: A Cultural Culinary History & The Other Side of History: Daily Life in the Ancient World

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $759.90 Starting at $759.90 $894.90 $759.90$894.90
  11. (Set) Great Meals in Less Time & Culinary History Set

    (Set) Great Meals in Less Time & Culinary History

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $414.90 Starting at $414.90 $474.90 $414.90$474.90
    It’s often hard to create great meals with our busy schedules. Learn the tips and tricks of famous chefs in Making Great Meals in Less Time, and get great time-saving techniques, as well as recipes to try out. Complete your foodie feast with Food: A Cultural Culinary History to learn about the fascinating world of what we eat, why we eat it, and how food has had such a profound impact on our culture.
  12. (Set) The Joy of Ancient History & World Was Never the Same Set

    (Set) The Joy of Ancient History & World Was Never the Same

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $629.90 Starting at $629.90 $629.90 $629.90$629.90

    Out of stock

  13. (Set) Great Ideas of Philosophy & 36 Big Ideas Set

    (Set) Great Ideas of Philosophy & 36 Big Ideas

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $499.90 Starting at $499.90 $499.90 $499.90$499.90

    Out of stock

  14. (Set) The Joy of Ancient History & Foundations of Western Civ Set

    (Set) The Joy of Ancient History & Foundations of Western Civ

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $399.90 Starting at $399.90 $399.90 $399.90$399.90
  15. (Set) Music as a Mirror of History & Food: A Cultural Culinary History Set

    (Set) Music as a Mirror of History & Food: A Cultural Culinary History

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $654.90 Starting at $654.90 $759.90 $654.90$759.90
    What can we learn about history when we apply a unique lens and a new perspective? This two-course set gives you a different view of history, looking at the culture impact of music and food. Music as a Mirror of History explore how music can bring us not only transcendent beauty and joy, but also understanding, compassion, and meaning amid even the most terrible of human events. Food: A Cultural Culinary History...
  16. (Set) The Joy of Ancient History & The Persian Empire Set

    (Set) The Joy of Ancient History & The Persian Empire

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $329.90 Starting at $329.90 $329.90 $329.90$329.90
  17. (Set) Food, Science, and the Human Body & Food: A Cultural Culinary History Set on sale

    (Set) Food, Science, and the Human Body & Food: A Cultural Culinary History

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Save up to $608.00 Starting at $106.90 $759.90 $106.90$759.90
    Think twice about your dinner plate with this eye-opening two-course set. Explore the fascinating evolution of the human diet with an Anthologist in Food, Science, and the Human Body. Then, travel the world discovering fascinating food lore and culture of all regions and eras—as an eye-opening lesson in history as well as a unique window on what we eat today with Food: A Cultural Culinary History.
  18. (Set) 36 Big Ideas & The Joy of Ancient History Set

    (Set) 36 Big Ideas & The Joy of Ancient History

    Taught By Multiple Professors
    Starting at $399.90 Starting at $399.90 $399.90 $399.90$399.90
    Learn something new and exciting with this set of collections courses. Begin by exploring 36 ideas – philosophy, science and more – that have changed the face of civilization. Then, dive into ancient history and hopscotch around the world and across time to experience the fascinating variety of what the past has to offer.