Monday, August 09, 2010

Reading and Teaching Food

I, I will surviiiiive! It's Monday, and how y'all doin'? I'm up, surprisingly perky, and in the middle of an English class at the moment. My students are on break, so I thought I'd take a few minutes to post my Monday goodness.

We had a good weekend. Swimming Saturday evening, visited my mom yesterday, did some cleaning and organizing, and whipped up some fried catfish last night while we watched the Cowboys game. While all of that was going on, Rocketgirl posted about her new books. She got into the ones I had recently packed up at my mom's house, so a big stack of those came home with us.

My "Monday What are You Reading" is slightly uneventful, but I've tried to embellish for your reading pleasure. Last week's academic start-of-term threw me off, so I haven't completed anything since Beatrice and Virgil. However, I do have quite a few books on the go:

In addition to Coop and The Secret Life of Bees, I spent some time digging into foodie books in preparation for my classes this term. I've taken a cue from Andi of AndiLit and decided to theme my freshman writing courses. We'll be discussing food in all its many facets: the familial, political, industrial, economic, environmental, and so on. We'll use this as a jumping-off point for our writing, and I think it'll be much more fun than what we've done in the past. The first paper they have to write is about a memory, so I'll have them write about one of their favorite memories of food. Their first reading will be an excerpt from "The Queen of Mold," Ruth Reichl's essay about her horrible-cook mother (taken from Tender at the Bone and published in part at Read it here.

So far I'm looking through the following books for other essays, pieces of essays, or chapters about all of the foodie topics I mentioned above:

Confections of a Closet Master Baker, by Gesine Bullock-Prado
A Cook's Tour, by Anthony Bourdain
Green, Greener, Greenest, by Lori Bongiorno
Food, Inc., edited by Karl Weber
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, by Barbara Kingsolver
The Omnivore's Dilemma, by Michael Pollan

...and I might find something tasty-licious in Coop or The Bucolic Plague. Ya never know!

If you have any foodie/farming essays or books to recommend, please do! I'll gladly torture my students with the material!!!

In addition to our reading, I think we might also watch Super Size Me and Food, Inc. There's another documentary I ran across at Blockbuster, The Garden, that looks really good, too. Haven't gotten to watch that one, though.

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