Department or Program



My thesis involves a study of the cultural phenomenon known as the “sobremesa” in Spanish culture, which consists of spending time talking at the table after eating a meal and waiting for food to digest. While studying abroad in Madrid, Spain during the fall semester of 2021, I found it intriguing how Spaniards have special time reserved for relaxing after a meal and socializing; I experienced this to be true inside the home and out at restaurants. In this thesis I examine how Spanish people understand the “sobremesa” and how their understandings are shaped by conceptions of hospitality, age, gender, class, and nationality. I also examine the practices of sociality that are encouraged and discouraged during the “sobremesa.” In addition to my study abroad experience, my thesis is grounded in two weeks of ethnographic research I conducted in Madrid, Spain in the winter of 2022-2023. I studied the “sobremesa” during this time by eating meals with my host mother, her friends and family, and my friends, observing customer and employee interactions at restaurants, and holding interviews in restaurants and households.

Level of Access

Open Access

First Advisor

Rubin, Josh

Date of Graduation


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Number of Pages


Components of Thesis

1 pdf file

Open Access

Available to all.