Project Title: A Cup of Culture: The Role Coffee Plays in World Culture
BASIS Advisor: Dr. John Hight
Internship Location: Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage
Onsite Mentor: Betty J. Belanus
For millions of people in the United States, coffee is an essential start to their morning. For centuries, coffee has played an essential role in economics, but recently its effect on cultural identity has dramatically grown in importance. Coffeeshops are places of relaxation and discussion, while coffee determines tropes of American identities: the half-caff soy grande cappuccino, the local hand-brewed coffee, the gas station coffee evangelist. Throughout my project, I will explore the way coffee is used to signal identity and how advertising reinforces this. By working with the Smithsonian’s Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, I will examine the way people respond to significant changes in our culture, such as the recent adaptations we have had to make due to the global pandemic. I will use my internship to further my research of how coffee culture is adapting to a time when people can’t go to coffeeshops.
As my senior project is coming to an end, I have just been creating my final project and editing the work I have done over this year. I am fortunate to still have had my internship and conducted independent research according to plan. I can’t wait to keep applying what I have learned in my […]
Closing Down of Shops
As some local coffee shops are closing, the niche places used to find themselves after work or during their lunch break are gone. This could mean a possible future where the big corporations are the only coffee shops in town. On the other hand, people are now making coffee at home more than they used […]
New Coffee Culture
I have been looking at the way coffee culture has adapted over the pandemic and how limited face-to-face interactions have re-shaped our coffee culture. With stores opening up with limited capacity, it is interesting to see the way people cautiously interact with one another again and what this means for coffee shops moving forward.
There is not much to say about my research other than it is going well, and I am solely doing independent research right now. I am working to craft my final project and consolidating my work.
Working through the Pandemic
My internship has concluded shorter than expected because of the pandemic, however, I am trying to make light of this situation by learning about the new role coffee culture has taken. I find it interesting how when there are no coffee shops to congregate at, a lot of people are still making daily trips to […]
Writing for the Smithsonian
As my research is coming to a conclusion, I have kept busy by writing blog posts for the Smithsonian. I was asked to write one on how students and teachers have coped with online learning and the tools that have helped them through this confusing time. From Netflix Party to Zoom, I tried to cover […]
The Pandemic’s Effect on Everyday Life
In light of the new stay-at-home order issued by Virginia’s governor, both students and parents are unsure of what life will be like until June 10. However, this has allowed me to speak (virtually, of course) to several students and teachers about the changes to their academic lives. I have found that those who have […]
My research on how culture is advertised to the public has been narrowed down to specifically how online learning is becoming increasingly popular amongst students in America. My original project was to research how cultural events are advertised to the public, but due to COVID-19, we won’t be able to use the research to achieve […]
Week 1: Beginning Research
This past week I spent researching and brushing up on the prior research I have done about anthropology over the past few months. I reviewed my notes along with starting to read Michael Brian Schiffer’s book, Advances in Archaeological Method and Theory. This book dives deeper into the field and although it is dense, I […]
Introduction to the Role of Coffee in American Culture
Hello and welcome to my first blog post! I’m Katerina, a senior interested in studying culture and anthropology at BASIS Independent McLean. My goal throughout this senior project is to learn about American identity, what composes it, and the ways it is seen in society. The way I will be approaching this question is to […]