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Food Curriculum

 

Informational Text

 

The Omnivores Dilemma by Michael Pollan

The American Way of Eating by Tracie McMillan

An undercover journalist explores realities of migrant labor and working at Walmart.

Food Justice by Robert  Gottlieb & Anupama Joshi

Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World by Mark Kurlansky

Chew on This by Eric Schlosser and Charles Wilson, an adaption of Fast Food Nation for secondary students.

Taking Sides: Clashing Views on Controversial Issues in Food and Nutrition by Marion Nestle

"The Insanity of our Food Policy" by Joseph Stiglitz, New York Times, 11-16-13.

"Divided We Eat: As more of us indulge our passion for local, organic delicacies, a growing number of Americans don't have enough nutritious food to eat. How we can bridge the gap," Lisa Miller, Newsweek, November 29, 2010.

Tender at the Bone, by Ruth Reichl, a memoir of eating.

Walls, Jeannette.  The Glass Castle:  A Memoir.  New York:  Simon and Schuster, 2005.  
This New York Times Bestseller, which chronicles the economic struggles of Jeannette Walls, explores various causes of food insecurity, including mental illness and alcoholism.

Walsh, Bryan. "It's Not Just Genetics."  Time Magazine  Time Inc., June 12 2008.  Web.  18 November 2013.
Easy-to-read and slow to arrive at easy answers about America's obesity epidemic, this article is great for a class discussion.

Zinczenko, David.  "Don't Blame the Eater."  New York Times  New York Times Company, November 23, 2002. Web. 18 November 2013.
Though slightly out-of-date, Zinczenko's essay provides opportunities to discuss key questions about America's food crisis:  Who is to blame for obesity?  How have we changed our approaches to eating healthy?  Are we there yet?

Bittman, Mark.  "Is Junk Food Really Cheaper?"  New York Times  New York Times Company.  September 24, 2011.  Web.  18 November 2013.  
This essay is best read after having students analyze a variety of junk food products--mostly aimed toward children--and reflect on packaging, ingredients, and nutritional information.  Bittman argues rather compellingly that cooking is cheaper than fast food, and advocates for a culture of cooking.
Egan, Timothy.  "My End of the Food Chain."  New York Times:  Opinionator Blog  New York Times Company  November 24, 2011.  Web.  19 November 2013. 
Egan describes animals he has hunted, processed and cooked himself, ultimately arguing that America has lost touch with its food.  This article will especially appeal to hunters.

Shiva, Vandana. Earth Democracy:  Justice, Sustainability and Peace.  Cambridge:  South End Press, 2005.
Chapter One of Earth Democracy is especially powerful, arguing that all living beings are connected and have a right to sustenance.  This text is challenging, but very thought-provoking and rich with possibilities for discussion.

Infographic titled "What Are We Eating"
This is a great opportunity to discuss consumption habits (each American consumes, on average, 600 pounds of dairy per year?!) as well as develop critical thinking skills (where did the authors of this infographic get this information?  What aren't they telling us?).

 

Non-fiction
Food in Shakespeare: Early Modern Dietaries and the Plays
Joan Fitzpatrick

One-Hundred Food Journey
Richard C. Morais

Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health
Marion Nestle and Michael Pollan, 2013

Reel Food: Essays on Food and Film
Anne Bower, 2004

Food and Culture: A Reader (Second Edition)
Carole Counihan and Penny Van Esterik, 2007

Food in the USA: A Reader
Carole Counihan, 2002

On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen
Harold McGee, 2004

Animal, Mineral, Radical: Essays on Wildlife, Family, and Food
BK Loren, 2013

In Defense of Food: An Easter’s Manifesto
Michael Pollan, 2009

Food in History
Reay Tannahill, 1995

The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
Michael Pollan

A Cook’s Tour: Global Adventures in Extreme Cuisines
Anthony Bourdain

Eating Animals
Jonathan Safran Foer

It Must’ve Been Something I Ate: The Return of the Man Who Ate Everything
Jeffrey Steingarten

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life
Barbara Kingsolver

Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table
Ruth Reichl

How to Pick a Peach
Russ Parsons

Julie and Julia
Julie Powell

The Rituals of Dinner
Margaret Visser