Dr. Mucz with his book Baba’s Kitchen Medicines at the Folklore Lunch at UofA

Baba's Kitchen MedicinesOn Friday, April 13, 2012, the Kule Centre for Ukrainian and Canadian Folklore at the University of Alberta was honoured to have Dr. Michael Mucz as our speaker at the last Folklore Lunch of this academic year. During his presentation entitled “Tommorow is Too Late!” Dr. Mucz shared his research for the book Baba’s Kitchen Medicines: Folk Remedies of Ukrainian Settlers in Western Canada.

Dr. Mucz is a professor of biology at the University of Alberta. He started his research for the book as a botanical project while on sabbatical in 1992. Interested in all aspects of Ukrainian pioneers life, he interviewed many Ukrainian Canadians on the Prairies, primarily in Alberta,  who were around 80 years old at the time. The result of this research is a book Baba’s Kitchen Medicines, which the author believes to be not an academic publication, but a book that will be interesting for many, and also a publication that will help people reconnect with their heritage.

“This book bursts with the cultural memory of pioneering folk from Canada’s prairieland. From fever to frostbite, this incomparable compendium of tinctures, poultices, salves, decoctions, infusions, plasters, and tonics will fascinate and often mortify readers from all walks of life. The comprehensiveness of Mucz’s research and interviews framed with deftly painted historical, cultural, and botanical backgrounds guarantee that this chapter of the Canadian story will continue to be told for generations to come. It is a deep, charming, and often moving work of intricate anthropology that will stir scholar and non-specialist alike.” (University of Alberta Press)

Folklore Lunch Series started in 2005 as an excellent opportunity for graduate students in the Ukrainian Folklore Program at the University of Alberta to present their research, share their ideas, and discuss topics presented by other guest speakers. All the presentations are open to the public. More information www.ukrfolk.ca

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