Food: Rituals, Technologies, and Policies
We will read, write, and talk about food from a multidisciplinary perspective. Novels and films elevate food well beyond the mundane necessity of caloric sustenance. Yet, the forms food take vary from person, place, and time and, in many ways, provide for connections and differences between people. Improving and understanding food at a molecular level are goals of scientists, but do technical achievements really impact food choices and food quality? With increasing reports of foodborne illness, is our food safe? What are the governmental policies that protect consumers? How do these policies respond to new food technologies such as genetically modified foods or nanoparticles in food? We’ll feast on these topics.
Books Discussed in This Tutorial
Why I Taught This Topic
In my tutorial, I link a topic all of my students are very familiar with (food) and the Grinnell liberal arts education. Our three books draw from the literature of the humanities, cultural studies from social studies, and the interface of science and technology from the sciences to connect with the everyday aspects of what we eat. In our reading, writing, and discussion of food topics, I introduce the students to the range of directions their college education at Grinnell can take. Students will be eating for the rest of their lives and after this tutorial I hope each bite they take will be enriched.
– Leslie Lyons