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Food Studies at Penn


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Current Course Offerings: Fall 2016


Code Name Instructor Day/Time
ANTH 148-401 Food and Fire: Archaeology in the Laboratory Katherine Mattison Moore MW 1:00-2:00 PM
(cross-listed with CLST-148-401 and NELC-189-401) FULFILLS HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES SECTOR REQUIREMENT. This course will let students explore the essential heritage of human technology through archaeology. People have been transforming their environment from the first use of fire for cooking. Since then, humans have adapted to the world they created using the resources around them. We use artifacts to understand how the archaeological record can be used to trace breakthroughs such as breaking stone and bone, baking bread, weaving cloth and firing pottery and metals. The seminar will meet in the Penn Museum's new Center for the Analysis of Archaeological Materials. Students will become familiar with the Museum's collections and the scientific methods used to study different materials. Class sessions will include discussions, guest presentations, museum field trips, and hands-on experience in the laboratory.
ANTH 440-301 Plants and Society Chantel E. White TR 3:00-4:30 PM
Interactions between humans and the living landscape around us have played - and continue to play - a fundamental role in shaping our worldview. This course is designed to introduce students to the diverse ways in which humans interact with plants. We will focus on the integration of ethnographic information and archaeological case studies in order to understand the range of interactions between humans and plants, as well as how plants and people have profoundly changed one another. Topics will include the origins of agriculture; cooking and plant processing; human health and the world of ethnomedicine; and poisonous and psychoactive plants. We will examine ancient plant material firsthand at the Center for the Analysis of Archaeological Materials (CAAM) and will handle botanical ecofacts from the Penn Museum's collections. Students will also carry out a substantial research project focused on an archaeological culture and plant species of their own interest.
ANTH 773-301 What is Extinction? Deborah A. Thomas and Richard M. Leventhal M 12:00-2:00 PM
Open to second year anthropology graduate students. Other interested students should contact the instructors for permission before enrolling. This seminar is a critical exploration of the concept of extinction as it is being understood, witnessed, and/or debated in the early 21st century. What kind of decisions and actions are made on the basis of something -a way of life, a language, or a body of evidence - that is said to be disappearing? Answers to the question of extinction often exceed theoretical frames, making extinction, near-extinction, and the "hour" of extinction, for that matter, not at all transparent phenomena. An anthropological "four-field" approach will help navigate this boundary object and the complex empirical realities it entails. Topics include biodiversity loss and extinction events, language endangerment and cultural and ethnic genocide; sex-selection and femicide, end-of-life ethics and care; climate change and food insecurity, the extinction of diseases & the emergence of new ones, "salvage anthropology" and colonial legacies, and war and contemporary heritage loss. The course consists of short papers, engagements with colloquium speakers, as well as an end-of-year graduate student colloquium.
BE 330-401 Soft Materials Russell John Composto TR 3:00-4:30 PM
(Cross-listed with MSE 330-401) Prerequisites: Juniors and higher, CHEM 102. This course will serve as an introduction of soft condensed matter to students with background in chemistry, physics and engineering. It covers general aspects of fundamental interactions between soft materials with applications involving polymers, colloids, liquid crystals, amphiphiles, food and biomaterials.
BIBB 227-401 Physiology of Motivated Behaviors Harvey J. Grill TR 1:30-3:00 PM
(Cross-listed with PSYC 127-401) This course focuses on evaluating the experiments that have sought to establish links between brain structure (the activity of specific brain circuits) and behavioral function (the control of particular motivated and emotional behaviors). Students are exposed to concepts from regulatory physiology, systems neuroscience, pharmacology, and endocrinology and read textbooks as well as original source materials. The course focuses on the following behaviors: feeding, sex, fear, anxiety, the appetite for salt, and food aversion. The course also considers the neurochemical control of responses with an eye towards evaluating the development of drug treatments for: obesity, anorexia/cachexia, vomiting, sexual dysfunction, anxiety disorders, and depression.
BIOE 550-001 Food Ethics Anne E. Barnhill W 4:30-7:00 PM
Undergraduates Need Permission. This is a topics course - for information on the topic currently being offered, please go to the course listing on the Bioethics website:
ENGL 157-301 Introduction To Journalistic Writing: Writing About Food Richard L Nichols T 1:30-4:30 PM
ENVS 325-001 Sustainable Goods James R. Hagan TR 1:30 -2:50 PM
  The study of sustainability-the long term viability of humans in harmony with the environment-has been identified as a critical issue for society and industry and is evolving to examine how society should conduct itself in order to survive.This issue impacts the consumer goods that we use in our lives,the processes that are designed to make these goods, and the raw materials that we obtain to create these goods.The questions that we will examine will be: can these goods be obtained, made, and consumed in a fashion that allows the current quality of life to be maintained (or enhanced) for future generations? Can these processes be sustainable? A review of consumer goods is necessary as the starting point in order to understand the basic needs of people in society and why people consume goods as they do. Subsequently,each student will choose a product to examine in detail and will research the product for its impact with respect to natural resource selection, production, use, and disposal/reuse.
ENVS 609-660 Creating Gateways to the Land with Smarter Conservation Strategies Lisa A Kiziuk T 5:30 PM-8:10 PM
  Conservationists were long accused of ignoring the needs of human communities and have often been thought of as protecting land from people. Now, the conservation movement is embracing a different view, that of protecting land with and for people. As a result innovative programs have been developed that connect people to nature, thereby helping to facilitate land conservation. This interdisciplinary course will integrate concepts in scientific method, study design, ecology, and conservation with a focus on birds in order to foster an understanding of how research can inform management of wildlife populations and communities. Topics will include wildlife management, habitat restoration, geographical information systems (GIS), sustainable agriculture, integrated land-use management, and vegetation analysis. This course will also provide opportunities for field research and application of techniques learned in the classroom.
ENVS 633-660 Quenching the World's Thirst for Water: Analyzing the drivers that threaten global water supply and discovering possible solutions. Stanley Laskowski W 5:30 PM-8:10 PM
  Inadequate supplies of high quality water has now been widely recognized as one of the most critical issues in the world (see World Economic Forum rankings of global threats). The reasons for these problems differ considerably by region of the world. This course will provide an overview of the drivers of the water crisis and provide examples of solutions that have been used to address these challenges.
ENVS 667-660 Introduction to Sustainability James R. Hagan R 5:30 PM-8:10 PM
  The study of sustainability-the long term viability of humans in harmony with the environment-has been identified as a critical issue for society and industry and is evolving to examine how society should conduct itself in order to survive.There are a number of aspects to how society organizes its activities that will be reviewed. Issues such as sustainable products, sustainable agriculture, sustainable forestry, sustainable fisheries, and sustainable communities, to name just a few, are areas that are the focus of the need for change. This course will review the various aspects of sustainability in society and ask each student to conduct a qualitative comparison of the life cycle impacts of two products that provide the same function to determine which is more sustainable and if and how they could both be made sustainable for the long term.
HSOC 135-401 The Politics of Food and Agriculture Jane Kauer and Mary Summers W 3:30-6:30 PM
(cross-listed with PSCI-135-401 ) AN ACADEMICALLY BASED COMMUNITY SERVICE COURSE. In this ABCS and Fox Leadership Program course students will use course readings and their community service to analyze the institutions, ideas, interests, social movements, and leadership that shape "the politics of food" in different arenas. Service sites include: the Agatston Urban Nutrition Initiative; the Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger; the West Philadelphia Recess Initiave; the Vetri Foundation's Eatiquette Program; and Bon Appetit at Penn. Academic course work will include weekly readings, Canvas blog posts, several papers, and group projects. Service work will include a group presentation (related to your placement) as well as reflective writing during the semester. Typically one half of each class will be devoted to a discussion of the readings and the other either to group work and discussion of service projects, or to a course speaker. This course is affiliated with the Communication within the Curriculum (CWIC) program, and student groups are required to meet twice with speaking advisors prior to giving presentation.
NURS 112-001 and 112-002 Nutrition Science and Applications Bart De Jonghe 001: TR 3:00-4:30 PM; 002: TR 1:30-3:00 PM
An overview of the scientific foundations of nutrition. The focus is on the functions, food sources and metabolism of carbohydrate, fat, protein, vitamins and minerals. Effects of deficiency and excess are discussed and dietary recommendations for disease prevention are emphasized. Current issues and controversies are highlighted. Students will analyze their own dietary intakes and develop plans for future actions.
NURS 313-401 Obesity and Society Ross Johnson R 3:00-6:00 PM
(cross-listed with NURS 513-401) AN ACADEMICALLY BASED COMMUNITY SERVICE COURSE. This course will examine obesity from scientific, cultural, psychological, and economic perspectives. The complex matrix of factors that contribute to obesity and established treatment options will be explored. This course satisfies the Society & Social Structures Sector for Nursing Class of 2012 and beyond.
NURS 365-001 Case Study: Case Analysis in Clinical Nutrition Theory Monique Dowd W 1:00-4:00 PM
Prerequisites: NURS 104, 106. This course is designed for present and future nurse professionals who wish to increase their knowledge of nutrition and expertise and application of knowledge to achieve optimal health of clients and themselves. Principles of medical nutrition therapy in health care delivery are emphasized in periods of physiologic stress and metabolic alterations. Individual nutrient requirements are considered from pathophysiologic and iatrogenic influences on nutritional status. Nutritional considerations for disease states will be explored through epidemiological, prevalence, incidence, treatment and research data. Understanding application of medical nutrition therapy are included through case analysis and field experiences.
NURS 375-001 Nutrition Throughout the Life Cycle Monique Dowd W 5:00-8:00 PM
AN ACADEMICALLY BASED COMMUNITY SERVICE COURSE. Understanding and meeting nutritional needs from conception through adulthood will be addressed. Nutrition-related concerns at each stage of the lifecycle, including impact of lifestyle, education, economics and food behavior will be explored.
NURS 376-001 Issues in Nutrition, Exercise, and Fitness Kelly A. Dougherty F 12:00-3:00 PM
An examination of the scientific basis for the relationship between nutrition, exercise and fitness. The principles of exercise science and their interaction with nutrition are explored in depth. The physiological and biochemical effects of training are examined in relation to sports performance and prevention of the chronic diseases prevalent in developed countries.
NURS 521-301 Current Topics in Nutrition: Nutritional Neuroscience Matthew R. Hayes F 1:00-4:00 PM
The objective of the course is to integrate the nutrition knowledge obtained from previous course work in nutrition and provide the student the opportunity to explore, analyze and formulate implications of the research and related literature on a self-selected topic under the guidance of the faculty coordinator. Current topics and controversies in nutrition will be discussed weekly. Readings will be assigned in coordination with each discussion topic and students will be required to seek out other sources of information to add to the class discussion. Topics will change from year to year to reflect the most recent interests and issues.
NURS 521-302 Current Topics in Nutrition: Neuroscience of Nutrition & Ingestive Behavior Bart De Jonghe F 1:00-4:00 PM
The objective of the course is to integrate the nutrition knowledge obtained from previous course work in nutrition and provide the student the opportunity to explore, analyze and formulate implications of the research and related literature on a self-selected topic under the guidance of the faculty coordinator. Current topics and controversies in nutrition will be discussed weekly. Readings will be assigned in coordination with each discussion topic and students will be required to seek out other sources of information to add to the class discussion. Topics will change from year to year to reflect the most recent interests and issues.
PUBH 553-001 Science & Politics of Food Christina A. Roberto M 5:00-8:00 PM
Undergraduates Need Permission.
RELS 356- Living Deliberately: Monk, Saints, and the Contemplative Life. Justin Thomas McDaniel TR 1:30-3:00 PM
Students who are not Religious Studies Majors and are not honors students must gain permission from instructor to enroll in this course. This is an experimental course in which students will experience monastic and ascetic ways of living. There will be no examinations, no formal papers, and very little required reading. However, each participant will need to be fully committed intellectually and participate in the monastic rules in the course involving restrictions on dress, technology, verbal communication, and food. The course subject matter is about ways in which nuns, monks, shamens, and swamis in various religious traditions (Buddhist, Muslim, Catholic, Jain, Taoist, Hindu, Animist, among others) have used poetry, meditation, mind-altering chemicals, exercise, magic, and self-torture to cope with pain and suffering, as well as struggle with spiritual, ethical, and metaphysical questions concerning the nature of the soul, the afterlife, and reality. Through monastic and spiritual practice, this course hopes to provide students with an opportunity to struggle with these questions themselves.
URBS 290-301 Metropolitan Nature Michael Nairn M 2:00-5:00
Metropolitan Nature begins with the premise that in order to understand the complex and skewed relationship between nature and its natural resource base, we must examine different scales simultaneously. The course explores a variety of issues concerning natures role in the contemporary urban world with a focus on urban sustainability. At its core, sustainability is a radical concept. Co-opted by marketing slogans, stripped of meaning and context, it has become vague and pliable. It does, however, have a real meaning, which will form the basis for examining nature in the city. Sustainability demands a systems view of both the economy and environment and understanding the management of their interactions. The course focuses on the ecological aspects of the emerging field of ecological economics fostering an understanding of the ecological principles of urban sustainability.
URBS 439-301 Suatainability and the Urban Neighborhood Richard Wayne Berman T 1:30-4:30 PM
This studio style class will follow the method of a traditional architecture and city planning studio, in that the learning will occur while students do a simulated project. A specific neighborhood in Philadelphia will be chosen and students will examine the neighborhood in detail, focusing on the different aspects that comprise the concept of sustainability. This will include issues of density, diversity of uses, transportation, livability, environmentally sustainable buildings, food accessibility, environmentally sustainable materials, and education. It will also look into issues related to social sustainability and social diversity. Students will have two main projects within the semester. The first is to analyze the chosen neighborhood, in terms of the different aspects of sustainability. The second is to create guidelines to lead it towards a more sustainable future. Definitions of sustainability will be explored throughout this process. As each component of sustainability is examined within the context of the chosen neighborhood, it will simultaneously be explored in readings, class discussions, guest lectures and tours.
URBS 457-401 Globalization & The City Arjun Shankar T 4:30-7:30 PM
(cross-listed with SOCI 435-401) FULFILLS CULTURAL DIVERSITY IN THE US REQUIREMENT. Over the past two decades, the public imagination has been gripped by the concept of globalization. Scholars, corporations, advertisers and government officials have latched onto this idea as a defining feature of our current era. These various constituencies use globalization not only to account for epochal shifts in our economy and society, but also to justify new types of business strategy and public policy. This course will examine three interlinked dimensions of globalization: Global economic processes (e.g. the transnational operations of multinational firms that have given rise to a new international division of labor); cultural globalization (e.g. the spread of American brands like Coca Cola, Nike and Hollywood films), and political globalization (e.g. the rise of supranational organizations like the IMF, World Bank and WTO that promote the idea of free markets). Moreover, we will study globalization in the context of cities because, given their centrality to globalization processes, it is in cities that we can best understand how globalization takes place. In cities, we can study the global economic processes that restructure urban space, giving rise to new financial districts, international art exhibits and post-modern architecture and entrepreneurial strategies that seek to elevate cities to world city status. The course will examine these processes in a comparative light, contrasting urban globalization processes in Europe and North America with those in Latin America, Asia and Africa.
WRIT 030-310 Global Politics of Hunger Michael Burri TR 10:30 AM-12:00 PM
FULFILLS WRITING REQUIREMENT. In 2000, world leaders and experts declared the eradication of hunger to be an urgent and attainable goal. Since then, the rise in commodity food prices has been linked to both a widening global gap between the rich and the poor, and to political unrest from the Arab Spring to Latin America. With the right-wing focused on private sector solutions and the left-wing dedicated to the use of public money, new forms of technocratic philanthropy have promised a humanitarian relief model capable of transcending traditional political categories. Speaking to G20 leaders in 2011, Bill Gates argued that ???people who are pessimistic about the future tend to extrapolate from the present in a straight line.??? The Gates Foundation would break that straight line. Yet, can a philanthrocapitalism that David Rieff recently described as ???irreducibly undemocratic??? live up to its big promises? This seminar examines controversies of global food security and the troubled new solutions for extra food production.