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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Geography

Undergraduate Course: Geographies of Food (GEGR10115)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe study of food in all its dimensions offers insights into a wide range of pressing questions in human geography. Food occupies everyone to some extent, connecting people to plantation economies and histories, national and transnational resources, regulations and markets, commodity cultures and alternative economies, and collective understandings of risk, scarcity and abundance. The course provides students with a political, economic, and social understanding of food production, marketing/distribution and consumption, power-laden processes revealed as connected in time and space. Students will gain a holistic understanding of food systems in the global North and South, including current trends that restructure the North/South divide, complementing other courses with an international development focus. Students will become proficient in the use of qualitative methods to understand, compare and evaluate food-related projects enacted at different scales.
Course description Syllabus:
Wk 1: Introductory lecture: Why Geographies of Food?
Wks 2 & 3: The origins of globalized food
Wks 4, 5 & 6: Continuities and changes in the global food economy
Wks 7 & 8: Food (In)securities
Wks 9 & 10: Alternative foodways

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites It is RECOMMENDED that students have passed ( Human Geography (GEGR08007) AND Frontiers in Human Geography: Geographies of Development and Socionature (GEGR10112)) OR Development and Decolonization in Latin America (GEGR10114)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2015/16, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  45
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 22, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 4, Fieldwork Hours 16, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 10, Summative Assessment Hours 4, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 140 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 60 %, Coursework 40 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 60% exam; 40% essay (2000 words)

In addition to the above components of assessment, students must complete two formative assignments:
1. Food regimes map and timeline
2. Group fieldwork and presentation
Feedback Not entered
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)Geography of Food Main Diet2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. be able to outline a chronological survey of food regimes and relate then to present political economic relations witihn and between the global North and South
  2. be able to explain the political economic and social workings of the dominant food systems at various scales and demonstrate a knowledge of alternative trends
  3. be able to interpret, use and evaluate a wide range of data about food systems in the past and present
Reading List
Bell, D. and Valentine, G. 1997. Consuming geographies: we are where we eat. London and New York:

Counihan, Carole and Penny van Esterik. 2007. Food and culture: a reader (second edition). London and New
York: Routledge.

Friedberg, Susan. 2004. French beans and food scares. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Friedmann, Harriet. From colonialism to green capitalism: social movements and the emergence of food
regimes. In Fredrick H. Buttel and Philip McMichael (eds) New directions in the sociology of global development (research in rural sociology and development, vol. 11), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.227-264.

Fuller, Duncan, Andrew E. G. Jonas and Roger Lee. 2010. Interrogating alterity: alternative economic and
political spaces. Surrey: Ashgate, chs. 6 and 10.

Millstone, Eric and Timothy Lang. 2009. The atlas of food: Who eats what, where and why. Berkeley: University
of California Press.

Sen, Amartya. Food and Freedom. Available at:
Wilson, Marisa. 2014. Everyday moral economies: food, politics and scale in Cuba. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell
(chapter 6).
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Upon completing the course, students will be able to:
1. critically evaluate evidence and develop reasoned arguments orally, visually and in writing
2. work in a group to plan and conduct qualitative fieldwork, presenting outcomes in a clear and engaging manner
3. prepare maps and other visual material to demonstrate specific problems, concepts or trends
4. produce written work to a high standard, leaving enough time for thorough revision(s)
5. actively engage in learning by locating and reading appropriate source material, utilising resources and support offered by the university and scheduling appointments with the course organiser during office hours or when necessary
Special Arrangements None
KeywordsFood networks,commodity cultures,food regimes,alternative (or moral) economies,scale,qualitativ
Course organiserDr Marisa Wilson
Tel: (131 6)51 4634
Course secretaryMiss Sarah Mcallister
Tel: (0131 6)50 4917
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