"Our Welcome Table" presents a snapshot of work from the course "Exploring Inclusivity Through the Cultures of Food" in Art & Public Policy in Spring 2021. Through the online gallery you can click and engage with student projects and with other materials from the course.
In this class, we have explored “difference” through food. We will investigate food as a practice for engagement, activism, and nurture that is necessary for sustained growth. If an army runs on its stomach, so does a peace movement. Often there are shared foods, ingredients, or dishes, named or prepared differently, yet in close proximity to each other. Using food as a practice for engagement, activism, and nurture is necessary for sustained growth. Commensality growing, cooking, sharing, and celebrating food and lives is an applied way to practice theories of inclusivity. Who belongs? Where is the table, (home, prison, care facility, work)? Who cooks and is there equity for their work? Are we eating as a reflection of ourselves, our histories, our health, and healing?
Using food, land, access, and agency to explore questions of inclusivity across difference, resistance, and resilience, this course will look at current and historic food movements, culinary interventions, rites, and ceremonies including shared meals to build an agenda of collaboration and community. We will look theoretically, critically historically as well as concurrently studying makers, events, and movements including A Festa da Boa Morte, (The Festival of the Good Death) in Brazil, Cacerolazos (pot and pan rebellions), Fannie Lou Hamer’s Civil Rights Era, “Pig Bank”, Woolworth’s lunch counter sit-ins, projects and issues related to food mapping and food and faith, Vandana Shiva, Blondell Cummings’, Chicken Soup, which was featured in Brooklyn Museum’s Radical Black Women exhibition, The Malaga Island Project, Rachel Harding’s Welcome Table, and a variety of food art projects as a means to create our own interventions.