High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America
A One Story Up Production and Pilgrim Media Group for Netflix
It’s often said that food brings people together, but the story of Black cuisines in the United States is one of connections forged against unfathomable odds. Building on the tremendous, decades-long research of food historian Dr. Jessica B. Harris, who wrote the book on which the series is based, High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America, charts the evolution of Black foodways with both clarity and awe. In tracing the journey of specific foods, the series offers profound meditations on the violence of slavery and the pains enslaved people took to maintain ties, culinary and otherwise, to Africa even in the face of such brutality. Taking viewers across the Atlantic from Benin to South Carolina and up the eastern coast of the United States with breathtaking attention to the flora and fauna that African diasporic people have learned and transformed, High on the Hog serves as a corrective to histories that have excluded Black people’s contributions from this country’s culinary records. The series is far more than a beautifully shot retroactive study—it’s also a deeply felt portrait of communities spanning time and space. High on the Hog regards its subject with a genuine, earned intimacy; when host Stephen Satterfield ponders the lessons baked into sweet potatoes, yams, okra, or rice, his affinity for the story—for his own story, for the nation’s—is clear. For its cinematic, multidimensional chronicling of Black culinary histories, High on the Hog wins a Peabody Award.
PRIMARY PRODUCTION CREDITS
Network/Station/Platform: Netflix. Based on the book High on the Hog by Jessica B. Harris. Showrunner: Shoshana Guy. Executive Producers: Roger Ross Williams, Geoff Martz, Craig Piligian, Sarba Das, Fabienne Toback, Karis Jagger. Co-Executive Producers: Nicholas Caprio, Gretchen Stockdale. Associate Producers/Producers: Jonathan Clasberry, Lauren Vance, Christina Lenis. Directors: Roger Ross Williams, Jonathan Clasberry, Yoruba Richen. Writers: Shoshana Guy, Jonathan Clasberry, Christina Lenis. Editors: John S. Fisher, Ephraim Kirkwood. Talent: Stephen Satterfield. Cinematography: Jerry Henry. Sound/Music: Osei Essed.