Politics of Food

Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, once wrote: "You are what you eat." Do you ever wonder where your food comes from? Or where your garbage ends up? As we face increasing global environmental concerns, people throughout the world are seeking answers that will bring our planet to a healthier, more sustainable condition. All environmental controversies involve ethical dilemmas. Should we develop communities or leave open space? Where should we dispose of toxic wastes? What is a fair allocation of resources? How do we ensure clean air and water, and who should pay for it? Will the current agricultural practices provide both safe and healthy food, and sustain the planet? In this honors Learning Community we will explore these dilemmas as well as others and, more significantly, attempt to discern how the choices we make determine our existences and, perhaps more importantly, determine the lives of future generations, as well as the existence of the earth itself. "Land," as Aldo Leopold once wrote, "is a system of interdependent parts which should be regarded as a community and not a commodity." We will begin from Leopold's insight concerning the land that we rely upon to survive to explore various ecological philosophies and how these conceptual frameworks help us understand our natural place on our planet.


Holyoke Community College
303 Homestead Ave. Holyoke, MA 01040