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LibrlSt 721: Special Topics in Liberal Studies
Martha Carlin, Professor of History

Food, Culture, and Power: The Role of Food in History

Course Description
This course will investigate the significance of food in human history over the past five thousand years.

Are we what we eat? The history of human civilizations is inextricably bound to the history of food. This seminar will explore the role of food throughout human history. We will survey the history of food and eating chronologically, from prehistoric times to the present, and we will examine the role of food topically, analyzing its place in such aspects of human life and society as agriculture and commerce; famine and war; religion, ritual, and taboo; medical theory and diet; hospitality and power; eating and manners; technology and the household; age and gender; wealth and poverty; class and ethnicity; popular culture and national identity; changing tastes and the evolution of fashion; and myth and memory.

Students who take this class should expect to do a lot of reading and writing, thinking and discussing, and a certain amount of eating.

Tuesday, 6-8:40pm
Curtin Hall 939

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Send your questions and comments to the MLS director. Last Updated 04-27-05