SPEC 34
Reading, Writing, and Eating Winter 2023

Class Details

You may have heard that the way to one’s heart is through their stomach. How can something as fundamental as food help us understand more about our identity? How can food help us write creatively and convincingly about who we are, whom and what we love, and what we stand for? In this course, we will read about growing, eating, and cooking food, as well as about dining out. We will write in response to the texts we’re reading and to the food we’re eating. Our goal is to learn how to engage in critical analysis and self-inquiry to better understand writing skills like argument, analysis, grammar, and style, and how to write the personal for a public audience. This course is designed to support students who need extra instruction in the fundamentals of English composition, especially students for whom English is an additional language. Readings and texts will include excerpts from Zauner’s Crying in H Mart, Lee’s “Coming Home Again,” Laymon’s Heavy, Foster Wallace’s “Consider the Lobster,” Chang’s The Next Thing You Eat, and more. We’ll meet for six hours each week, and the class will occupy significantly more time outside of the classroom-roughly twenty hours a week-during which you’ll be engaged in the writing process, the eating experience, and reading for class. There will be at least one group meal at a local restaurant. Students will write three major assignments: a narrative nonfiction essay and two longform reviews.
The Class: Format: lecture
Limit: 12
Expected: NA
Class#: 1293
Grading: pass/fail only
Requirements/Evaluation: A 10-page paper
Prerequisites: N/A
Enrollment Preferences: This is a course ideally for EAL students
Unit Notes: Elizabeth Mikesch is the author of Niceties: Aural Ardor, Pardon Me (Calamari). She teaches at the Bard Microcollege in Holyoke, UMass Amherst, and sometimes Smith.
Attributes: EXPE Experiential Education Courses
SLFX Winter Study Self-Expression

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