Writing and Rhetoric

Second Major





Roth, LuAnne

Advisor Department

Writing & Rhetoric




cooking; pandemic; coming-of-age; creative nonfiction; qualitative research


The Covid-19 pandemic has shifted how we interact with our communities and how we carry out our daily lives. If stories in the news and in social media are any indication, food seems to be a surprising focus of the pandemic for young and old. Personally speaking, I delved into cooking. I experienced the tensions at the grocery. I adjusted my food shopping habits. I felt like I grew up. I began to wonder how other people my age might have modified their food preparation habits and what the experience of cooking in quarantine meant to them. In this honors project, I explore such ideas by conducting a literature review and in-depth qualitative interviews with five young adults between the ages of 20 and 27. After coding and analyzing the interview data, I have crafted a creative nonfiction essay that weaves together my personal experiences and those of other young adults. The resilience, creativity, and flexibility demonstrated by my interviewees reveals that cooking through quarantine is serving as a powerful coming-of-age experience for many. This piece of creative nonfiction reveals the ways in which young adults “grew up” through cooking in the midst of a global pandemic.