University of Vermont

UVM Course Directory

POLS 196 – Global Politics of Food

Credits: 3.00

Course Description: See Schedule of Courses for specific titles.

Section Description: This course provides a political look at food production, distribution and consumption both historically and today. It investigates food in the development of political hierarchy, the state system, industrial capitalism, U.S. hegemony, the politics of development, environmental issues, health and diet, and the politics of identity and difference. This course analyzes our food system and grapples with pressing questions about the future of food through the use of comparative politics and international relations concepts and theoretical approaches. This course will investigate the complex relationship between food and society by drawing out the connections between the food system, as it has developed and as it exists today, and major political issues and approaches. From the agrarian revolution that initiated forms of social hierarchy to the role of bread riots in the Arab Spring uprising, how humans produce, distribute and consume food has been integral to politics and the development of political structures. Through a study of the historic role food has played in the development of states, the emergence of complex trading routes and empires, the rise of capitalism and the industrial revolution, the growth of U.S. power, and the globally connected food trading regime, as well as a deep dive into contemporary politics of food, food social movements, hunger in a world of plenty, and the future of agriculture on a warming planet, this course will elucidate the ever present connection between our food system and our politics. The centrality of food in how we organize society, understand our cultural identity, interact with the natural world, and express our social and political convictions, makes it an insightful analytical tool into political processes and structures.

CRN: 14792

Section: A

Enrolled/Seats: 40/40

Days Time Location
MWF 12:00 - 12:50 LAFAYETTE HALL L302

Instructor(s): Bradley Bauerly

Meeting Dates: 13 Jan 2020 - 01 May 2020