Food Fight! The Role of Food in Advocacy and Sociopolitical Communication
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Division: The New School for Public Engagement
School: School of Undergraduate Studies
Department: Food Studies
Course Number: NFDS 3300
Course Format: Lecture
Permission Required: No
The importance of food in popular culture is evident in media such as television shows, films, and blogs. Complex issues such as hunger and food justice, health and obesity, locavorism, biotechnological influences, fair trade, ethical consumption, and sustainability are slowly entering the conversation about food in contemporary media outlets. We begin by examining the role food plays in communication from semiotic and cultural studies points of view. We then explore food as a focus of social, political, and environmental debates; as a topic discussed in social networks, advertising campaigns, political platforms, viral Internet campaigns, television programs, magazines, and newspapers; and as inspiration for art and media projects addressing these social and political issues. We discuss food and food advocacy content generators and consider effective communication strategies for food-related activism.