the political economy of food

I started teaching a course on this topic in 1995. At that time, the concept was so extremely uninteresting (both to the political economists and to the cultural studies people) that the university not only wouldn’t pay us but wouldn’t even allow us access to classroom space. Tony Samara and I taught the course in our living room for several years and I continued to teach it annually through 2009.

The course has three topics:  production, trade, and consumption, or agroecology, economy, and consumer culture.

Every semester we took the students on a field trip to the farmers market, and then home to teach them how to cook the things we’d fed them during the course, and also how to use the vegetables they’d brought home from the market.

Many students from this class have gone on to become food activists.

Here is the syllabus.


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