Mircea A. DIACONU
Ștefan cel Mare University of Suceava
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Eating in Vienna: Digressions on what it Means to Be from Bukovina in the Empire’s Capital
Abstract: Once in Vienna to get an education, the young Romanians that left Bukovina, be they sons of boyars, priests, peasants, or public servants, often found themselves in awe. One way or another, they soon experienced a hard time getting board and lodgings. To make ends meet, they had to pawn their belongings or borrow money, which spelled trouble for all of them. Consequently, their food choice and cooking skills welcome a cultural studies approach that reveals their worldview, identity or history proper. Taking into account mostly unknown memoirs, diaries and letters, the present paper aims to give insight into the eating habits and the world of young Bukovinians living in Vienna. Fitted within a chronological sequence, the case studies under scrutiny range from the Hurmuzachi brothers (Constantin, Eudoxiu, Gheorghe), Eminescu, and the so-called ‘Bukovinian colony’ to Ciprian Porumbescu and, eventually, Leca Morariu. Strangely enough, Morariu, although wounded in WWI, is the only one who managed to eat well while in Vienna. However, both his war and Vienna diaries are meaningful from many other perspectives than his meals. Beyond the actual or the implied questions they trigger, my somewhat random reading comes across as an opportunity to rediscover a lost world.
Keywords: Vienna, Bukovinian gastronomy, Eudoxiu Hurmuzachi, Eminescu, Ciprian Porumbescu, Leca Morariu.
Citation suggestion: Diaconu, Mircea A. “A mânca la Viena. Digresiuni despre ce înseamnă să fii bucovinean în capitala Imperiului.” Transilvania, no. 4 (2022): 60-74.