The purposes of this course are for students to explore the connections between food and major aspects of our lives (the environment, human health, culture, politics and economics), understand our relationships with food production and consumption, understand the basics of food commodity chains and why they are important, and know why using a geographical lens (highlighting scale, time, space, and place) to study food can be fruitful.
Food, like other basic needs, is often something that we take for granted. Most of us are disconnected from and have little to no knowledge about the processes that lead to food appearing in stores and outdoor markets. Food production and consumption, however, have significant relationships with many aspects of our lives. This ARM highlights these relationships, in particular the environment, human health, and political economy, and asks students to research them. Understanding and researching these relationships requires an interdisciplinary approach, and so this course involves basic social and natural science skills, as well as description, interpretation, and reflection skills from the humanities pharmacieviagra.com.
Students begin by defining food, food research and food commodity chains. Then they investigate food consumption by learning how to determine what nutrients are in food, investigating and re-imaging food labels, comparing food guides from different cultures, and learning about the effects of food environments on our health and rights. Next they investigate food production by comparing different forms of agriculture (industrial, pre-colonial, colonial, organic, biodynamic, urban). Then they will explore the flow of money in contemporary U.S. food system and debate human health, environmental, political and economic aspects of school food. The course culminates in a food commodity chain research project where students investigate the commodity chains of two foods, map, analyze, and compare these chains (again, in terms of environmental, human health, political and economic aspects), and then present and reflect on their experiences.
Unit 1 Introduction to Food Studies and Food Commodity Chains (4 sessions)
Unit 2 Food Consumption (7 sessions, 1 field trip)
Activity 10 Food Environments Field Trip
Unit 3 Food Production (7 sessions, 3 optional field trips)
Activity 12 Pre-colonial and Colonial Agriculture
Activity 13 "Sustainable" Agricultures
Unit 4 Food and Money (5 sessions)
Activity 14 Food-related Agencies and Programs of the U.S. Government
Activity 15 Agribusiness and Agricultural Cooperatives
Activity 16 Food Companies and Marketing
Activity 17 School Food Debate
Unit 5 Food Commodity Chain Research Project (4-6 weeks)
Part 1 Commodity Chain Basics
Part 2 Analysis Paper
Part 3 Presentation and Reflection