A fascinating new study of the symbolic power of food and its role
in forming kinship bonds and religious identity in early
Christianity Scholar of religion John Penniman considers the
symbolic importance of food in the early Roman world in an engaging
and original new study that demonstrates how "eating well" was a
pervasive idea that served diverse theories of growth, education,
and religious identity. Penniman places early Christian discussion
of food in its moral, medical, legal, and social contexts,
revealing how nourishment, especially breast milk, was invested
with the power to transfer characteristics, improve intellect, and
strengthen kinship bonds.
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