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On December 4, 2013, UNESCO inscribed Washoku (traditional Japanese cuisine) as the fifth food-related intangible cultural heritage -- social practice based on “skills, knowledge, practice and traditions related to the production, processing, preparation and consumption of food” ( Not only is Washoku associated with Japanese people’s efforts to preserve traditions which reflects in the unique spirit of craftsmanship, it also demonstrates their respect for nature and the sustainable use of natural resources. While Japanese cuisine is quickly becoming one of the most popular foreign food cultures in the world, proper knowledge of its culture is important to a cultivated person in modern society. Compared to other cultural elements such as art and literature, gastronomy is more easily appreciated and enjoyed by the general public and therefore an excellent way to access the history and culture of Japan. This course aims to help students to gain in-depth knowledge of the cultural, historical, symbolic, and philosophical implications in Washoku culture through reading, observation, description and organization of various Washoku topics, from street snack “Takoyaki” to formal Kaiseki haute-cuisine. Students will learn to appreciate Washoku through three practices: 1. Learn and become familiar with important Japanese terminologies in order to categorize and describe Washoku; 2. Observe and report about their Washoku dining experience based on knowledge learned in class, and; 3. Research and present about a Washoku topic to demonstrate their knowledge of, and ability to synthesize, major aspects of the scholarly literature of the field. The course will be conducted in English with the supplement of Japanese and Chinese. Knowledge in Japanese is not essential but the ability of reading Japanese Kana and Kanji will be an advantage.