Fall 2023 food-related courses

Click on the arrows to read more information about each course.

At the School of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering (ASE):

  • ANTH 161 Fieldwork Lab
    This workshop-style class offers a hands-on introduction to ethnographic methods, the signature toolkit of cultural anthropology. Students will work individually and collaboratively on small-scale projects. Methods and skills covered will include the key strategy of “participant-observation”; research design; spatial, visual, and discourse analysis; formal and informal interviewing; fieldnote writing and coding; ethnographic writing and other products; and ethical considerations, including those arising from the politics of difference, encounter, experience, and representation as well as the balancing of scholarly, community, and client goals. This year’s class project will involve user experience methods to gather data about a two-week challenge project being piloted at Tufts this fall. The course is open to students at all levels and counts toward the Social Sciences distribution requirement. It also counts as the practicum requirement for the Food Systems & Nutrition minor. Monday 1:20-4:20, Cathy Stanton
  • BIO 10/ENV 10 Plants and Humanity
    Principles of botany accenting economic aspects and multicultural implications of plants, their medicinal products, crop potential, and biodiversity. Emphasis placed on global aspects of this dynamic science, with selected topics on acid rain, deforestation, biotechnology, and other applications. Also covered are medicinal, poisonous, and psychoactive species, as well as nutritional sources from seaweeds and mushrooms to mangos and durians. Three lectures. Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 9:30-10:20, George Ellmore
  • BIO 185/ENV 182 Food for All: Ecology, Technology, Sustainability
    An interdisciplinary examination of the pros and cons of two divergent approaches to meeting the increasing global food demand: organic farming and genetic engineering. Contrasting crops grown in developing and industrialized countries serve as case studies to evaluate: (1) how ecological knowledge makes food production more sustainable; (2) what existing and emerging approaches can, in the face of climate change, contribute to a reliable supply of nutritious food; and (3) the political and economic drivers that shape who has access to these technologies. An important focus is developing communication skills for negotiating stakeholder-specific perspectives (growers, advocacy groups, industry, governmental agencies). Please see departmental website for specific details. Recommendations: Intro Bio or Intro Chemistry or equivalent. Monday 1:20-4:20, Sara Gomez and Colin Orians
  • BME 173 Cellular Agriculture and Biofabricated Foods
    Introduction to the concepts of cellular agriculture, food science and the use of biotechnology in food production. Laboratory experience in cell culture and biomaterials processing from cell isolation to generation of in vitro meat using tissue engineering techniques. Course culminates in a scientific, creative proposal based on student interests. Monday 6-9 pm, David Kaplan
  • CH-0199 Beyond the Food Desert
    See Community Health website for details.
  • ED 14 Food and Schools
    The story of food and schools, investigations into students’ own school experiences as they relate to food and school; the history of food in U.S. schools; the ways by which school food is a battleground for many beliefs about school and society; and how some schools approach feeding students and teaching about nutrition and food. Field work will involve visits to local educational institutions. Tuesday/Thursday 10:30-11:45, Ryan Redmond
  • ENV 9 Food Systems
    Introduction to the structure and functions of past, present, and future food systems. Emphasis is placed on the psychological, biological, social, economic and political systems that impact food production, processing, distribution, and consumption. Examination of real-world issues facing stakeholders in the New England food system. Mon/Wed 4:30-5:45, Cathy Stanton
  • HIST 5 History of Consumption
    The socio-political history of the use made of goods, food, and energy by different groups through an analysis of class, race, and gender. The course examines economic factors through social and cultural history in order to understand consumption within a global economy. Analysis of social structures in the Americas, China, Europe, India, and the Ottoman Empire, from the seventeenth century to the present day. Mon/Wed 1:30-2:45  plus recitation, Ina Baghdiantz-McCabe
  • ITAL77 Italian Foodways
    Historical, cultural, and social overview of foodways in Italy. National culinary identity and its effects on food production, preparation, consumption, and exportation. Cultural and economic significance of regional specialties officially protected by the European Union. Health benefits and social practices related to the Mediterranean diet and to nutrition in the Italian “blue zones.” Traditional production techniques, current food systems, and their place in the environment during the era of climate change. Sustainable practices and food security initiatives; social justice; immigration and food evolution; physical and mental health. Readings, podcasts, and movies. Taught in English. No prerequisites. Tues/Thurs 1:30-2:45, Rose Elizabeth Facchini
  • PSY 128 Nutrition and Behavior
    The interactions between nutritional variables and behavior in man and other animals. Effects of obesity, starvation, protein malnourishment, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies on intellectual function and behavior. Influences of diet on brain biochemistry and learning. Tuesday 4-6:30 pm, Grace Giles
  • UEP285/DEIJ214 Food Justice
    This class offers students different lenses, such as critical race theory, to see how the intersectionality of race, class, gender, sexuality, ability and citizenship play out in the development of systemic structural and socio-spatial inequities and injustices in food systems. It develops an understanding and contextualization of the role of food justice activism within the broader narrative of the alternative food movement and offers emerging ideas about how policymakers and planners can take a role in increasing food justice beyond the more mainstream and ultimately contested notions of what is ‘local’ and ‘sustainable.’ The course will help participants chart their role(s) in advocating for ‘just sustainability’ as a defining factor in becoming food systems planners and policymakers. Tuesday 3:15-5:45, Julian Agyeman

At the Friedman School for Nutrition Science and Policy

NOTE: Friedman School courses require the instructor’s consent for undergraduates to enroll. Undergrads may be able to register for other Friedman School courses with permission of the instructor. If you’re not sure whether a course will count toward the Food Systems & Nutrition minor or the food track of the ENVS major, email cathy.stanton@tufts.edu.

  • NUTR 215/UEP 223 Foundations of US Agriculture
    This course covers the major social, institutional and human aspects of the American agricultural system, both as it exists today as well as its historical development. After consideration of agricultural systems in general and of the values that underlie different concepts of agriculture, it covers some of the key historical forces that have made American agriculture what it is today, and the major role of the federal government, both past and present. The next part of the course deals with the economics of American agriculture as a whole and its large-scale structure, followed by an analysis of farming on the microlevel, emphasizing types of farms and farm-scale production economics. Recommendations: Graduate Standing or instructor consent. Wednesday 9 am-12 pm, Nicole Tichenor Blackstone