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Issue 17 Out Now

How Food Can Pave the Way to a Brave New World

Food is more than just sustenance. It is a powerful conduit for culture and history, connecting us to our roots and heritage. In the digital series "Cooking Back to Our Roots," the creator and host, Vivian Acquah, takes us on a journey of discovery through the lens of food. This unique series explores the rich tapestry of Afro-Dutch culture, delving into its history, traditions, and the profound impact food has on our world.

Sankofa: Learning from the Past

The series is inspired by the concept of Sankofa, an Andinkra symbol from West Africa that represents the importance of learning from the past. Vivian Acquah recognizes the power of looking back to move forward and explores how food can serve as a gateway to understanding our heritage and the lessons it holds. Sankofa becomes a guiding principle throughout the series, encouraging viewers to embrace their cultural roots and celebrate the richness of their identities.

"Sankofa is about reaching back to reclaim that which is lost to move forward." - Vivian Acquah

Connecting with Our Identity

Food is not just nourishment; it is a manifestation of our identity. By exploring the culinary traditions of others, Vivian Acquah endeavors to reconnect individuals with their cultural heritage. The series identifies the diverse flavors that have shaped various cultural cuisines, highlighting the immense contributions of Afro-Dutch cultures to the culinary world.

"Food is a powerful expression of who we are. It speaks to our history, our traditions, and our connection to one another." - Vivian Acquah

Through the exploration of food, "Cooking Back to Our Roots" uncovers hidden gems of historic knowledge. By delving into the origins of dishes and ingredients, the series provides insights into the travel and influence of food on cultures throughout history. It sheds light on the interconnectedness of nations and the cross-pollination of culinary traditions across continents.

Inspiring Cultural Exploration

The desired audience takeaway from "Cooking Back to Our Roots" is to inspire individuals to apply the principles of Sankofa in their own lives. By cooking with their roots in mind, viewers can embark on a journey of cultural exploration, embracing the flavors, techniques, and stories that have shaped their heritage. This series encourages us to celebrate our diversity and find common ground through the universal language of food.

"Cooking Back to Our Roots" goes beyond the culinary world and intertwines food with business. Vivian Acquah interviews a diverse range of CEOs and business representatives, highlighting the contributions of African diaspora entrepreneurs and showcasing their success stories. These interviews shed light on the dynamic intersection of culture, entrepreneurship, and leadership.

A Journey of Apology and Healing

The series acknowledges the painful history of the transatlantic slave trade and its lasting impact on African diaspora communities. Vivian Acquah, highlights moments of healing and reconciliation, such as the apology from the Dutch King in Season 2, which acknowledges the historical injustices inflicted by the slave trade. By exploring these narratives, the series invites viewers to reflect on the importance of acknowledging past wrongs and working towards a more inclusive future. Through food, we can heal the wounds of the past and pave the way for a more harmonious future.

Sharing Stories and Experiences

In collaboration with the Municipality of Amsterdam, "Cooking Back to Our Roots" provides a platform for high-profile Afro-Dutch professionals to share their stories. This initiative aims to amplify diverse voices and foster a greater understanding of African cultures. By sharing personal narratives and experiences, the series fosters empathy and breaks down stereotypes, promoting a more inclusive and interconnected world.

The long-term goal of "Cooking Back to Our Roots" is to continue its exploration of culture and history through food. The series consists of four episodes, each offering a unique perspective on Afro-Dutch culinary traditions. Beyond the digital format, the series will continue as a podcast, delving further into the diverse stories and experiences of African diaspora communities. With a planned total of 20 episodes, this immersive journey promises to captivate and educate audiences around the world.

Behind the Camera: The Creator's Story

Beyond the captivating content of "Cooking Back to Our Roots," it is essential to understand the woman behind the series. Vivian Acquah, the creator and host, brings her personal experiences and expertise to the table. As a black woman in the professional world, she initially felt isolated, but she persevered and carved out a space for herself as a consultant in the fields of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Through her work and personal journey, Vivian advocates for the importance of representation and inclusion in all aspects of life.

In addition to her work on "Cooking Back to Our Roots," Vivian is deeply invested in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace. Through her podcast, live streaming, and consultancy work, she addresses issues such as social justice and workplace prejudices. Vivian strives to create psychologically safe spaces and advocates for holistic wellness in work environments.

Where to Watch and How to Support

To embark on this culinary and cultural journey, you can watch "Cooking Back to Our Roots" on YouTube, and stay updated through their social media channels on Twitter and Facebook. Support the series by sharing the videos and spreading the word. Remember, this series is a celebration of Afro-Dutch cultures and a way to inspire future generations to embrace their roots with pride. This series is for us, by us. Let the inspiration of our ancestors guide us in shaping a brighter future.

"Cooking Back to Our Roots" is more than just a TV series. It is a celebration of culture, a journey of self-discovery, and a testament to the resilience and richness of African heritage. Through the exploration of food and the stories behind it, the series transcends boundaries and brings people together. Let us embrace the lessons it teaches, apply Sankofa in our lives, and honor our roots through the universal language of food.

Follow the series here:


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