One summer morning when I was about eight years old, my grandmother told me she was going to teach me how to make diples, a deep fried Greek pastry topped with honey and powdered sugar. In her cramped, Formica-filled kitchen, we also made koulourakia – plump hand-shaped twists she simply referred to as Greek Cookies. Together, we rolled up our sleeves, rolled out the dough, plastered our hands and forearms in flour, and went to work. We made tray after tray, more cookies than anyone could eat. But the eating wasn’t the important part; it was the making – the passing on of food, culture, history, tradition.
As I type this memory into existence, I’m suddenly left with another thought: nobody does that anymore. Or do they?According to an article in the April issue of Esquire, the only thing grandparents (aka Baby Boomers) are doing now is systematically disenfranchising the youth of America via decades of self-serving economic and social policy. But Grandmother Power: A Global Phenomenon (powerHouse books) may just prove all the cynics wrong. Paola Gianturco, author and documentary photographer of the new book talks to PLANET about grandmother activism, survival, and the global movement going on right now in kitchens, villages and courtrooms across the world.