Liberal Arts Electives

Classes

LART-101: Public Speaking

Speaking clearly and confidently is essential to success in both professional and personal situations. Effective speech is also crucial to citizenship and civic engagement. This introductory course will provide students with the opportunity to develop and strengthen their ability to speak in public in a variety of contexts. Public Speaking is a performance-based class in which students will be expected to deliver introductory, informative, persuasive, and special occasion speeches. Students will also learn the proper techniques for delivering a PowerPoint presentation. Preparation for effective oral presentation will also help develop students' organizational and critical thinking skills.

LART-200: Global Cuisines and Cultures: Italy

The study of global cuisines and cultures allows us to develop a greater understanding of the human condition. Through experiential learning, we will examine the connection between gastronomy, culture, society, and local and global food systems of Italy. We will visit farms, wineries, food processing plants, restaurants, museums, and historical and educational sites and institutions to learn about food production and consumption, as well as culinary tradition.

LART-205: Global Cuisines & Cult: France

The study of global cuisines and cultures allows us to develop a greater understanding of the human condition. Through experiential learning, we will examine the connection between gastronomy, culture, society, and local and global food systems of France. We will visit farms, wineries, food processing plants, restaurants, museums, and historical and educational sites and institutions to learn about food production and consumption, as well as culinary tradition.

LART-210: Global Cuisines and Cultures: Spain

The study of global cuisines and cultures allows us to develop a greater understanding of the human condition. Through experiential learning, we will examine the connection between gastronomy, culture, society, and local and global food systems of Spain. We will visit farms, wineries, food processing plants, restaurants, museums, and historical and educational sites and institutions to learn about food production and consumption, as well as culinary tradition.

LART-215: Global Cuisines & Cult: China

The study of global cuisines and cultures allows us to develop a greater understanding of the human condition. Through experiential learning, we will examine the connection between gastronomy, culture, society, and local and global food systems of China. We will visit farms, wineries, food processing plants, restaurants, museums, and historical and educational sites and institutions to learn about food production and consumption, as well as culinary tradition.

LART-220: Global Cuisines and Cultures: Peru

The study of global cuisines and cultures allows us to develop a greater understanding of the human condition. Through experiential learning, we will examine the connection between gastronomy, culture, society, and local and global food systems of Peru. We will visit farms, wineries, food processing plants, restaurants, museums, and historical and educational sites and institutions to learn about food production and consumption, as well as culinary tradition.

LART-225: Global Cuisines & Cultures: Costa Rica

The study of global cuisines and cultures allows us to develop a greater understanding of the human condition. Through experiential learning, we will examine the connection between gastronomy, culture, society, and local and global food systems of Costa Rica. We will visit farms, food processing plants, restaurants, museums, and historical and educational sites and institutions to learn about food production, consumption, and culinary tradition.

LART-230: Global Cuisines and Cultures: U.S. Northern California

The study of global cuisines and cultures allows us to develop a greater understanding of the human condition. Through experiential learning, we will examine the connection between gastronomy, culture, society, and local and global food systems of Northern California. We will visit farms, wineries, food processing plants, restaurants, museums, and historical and educational sites and institutions to learn about food production and consumption, as well as culinary tradition. The Global Cuisines and Cultures elective travel courses take place between bachelor's semesters in late April/early May and late July/early August.

LART-235: Global Cuisines and Cultures: Tanzania

The study of global cuisines and cultures allows us to develop a greater understanding of the human condition. Through experiential learning, we will examine the connection between gastronomy, culture, society, and local and global food systems of Tanzania. We will visit farms, wineries, food processing plants, restaurants, museums, and historical and educational sites and institutions to learn about food production and consumption, as well as culinary tradition.

LART-250: Globalization in Historic and Contemporary Contexts

This course examines the interdisciplinary topic of globalization, beginning with the history of increasing interconnection, including colonialism and imperialism, and highlighting the differences and similarities of previous forms of exchange from those practiced today. Students will discuss the impact of globalization on the state, individuals, and multinational entities such as corporations and NGOs, while avoiding the over-generalized use of the term that reduces it to the trope of McDonald's in Siberia or sushi in American grocery stores. At the end of this class, students will emerge with an understanding of how new global mobility and the power structures implicit in that mobility require us to reexamine previously accepted units such as state, company, or social group.

LART-255: History of Africa

This course surveys the history of Africa from the beginnings of human civilization to the present. Africa is home to one of the earliest cradles of civilization and, at present, 54 sovereign nations. Over 1.2 billion people live there and together, they speak more than 2,000 languages. Given this vast swath of time and experiences, this course can not be comprehensive; instead, it is structured to offer a deep dive into topics crucial to understanding Africa's past and its peoples. It begins by asking to students to consider how we know what we know about African history and cultures. In its second section, it addresses the origins of humanity and the development of early technologies before continuing on through the rise of kingdoms and empires. From there, it turns to Africa's incorporation into the modern global system with the growth of slave trade networks and the ensuing diaspora. The fourth section takes up the spread of colonization and responses to it, the results of which take root in a broad range of independence movements. The course concludes with a study of contemporary African identities.

LART-260: Justice, Ethical Leadership & Truth

This course will examine the intersection of leadership and ethics as it relates to the idea of justice in a variety of contexts including, but not limited to, political, social, and economic. Students will examine the ethical dilemmas of leadership and the moral implication of decision-making for both personal integrity and citizenship. The purpose of this course is to make visible the ethical challenges and decisions facing leaders as they decide what is just. Readings that focus on equality, liberty, empathy, and rights will be interrogated throughout the course.

LART-300: World Cultures and Cuisines

Food is a critical component of culture within any society. This course investigates its impact on lifestyle, commerce, and politics in key global regions. Students learn why and how agriculture, religion, history, and environmental sustainability influence the characteristics of a culture and its food. The course develops an expanded understanding and appreciation of why and how people from diverse world cultures with varying backgrounds approach food and beverages differently.

LART-305: Equality, the "American Dream," and the Struggle for Wealth

The purpose of this course is to explore the idea of equality in the American historical experience by analyzing class conflict and the competition for economic resources. The focal point of the course is working people and their efforts to achieve the "American Dream." The tension between labor and capital will provide the framework for the course. Ideas about equality from the American Revolution through the Civil War will be examined, and then tested by uncovering how the idea of equality translates into the industrial age and beyond. Specific attention is devoted to the Gilded Age and the Progressive Era, as well as the New Deal, and the current debate over income equality.

LART-306: Food Photography and Food Styling

Students will be introduced to the principles and techniques of creating visual content and visual storytelling through digital photography. This course will give the student a basic understanding of digital capture utilizing 35mm DSLR camera systems, digital darkroom techniques, and best digital workflow practices. Students will develop a visual literacy by analyzing historical trends of visual communication as well as critically examining current marketing and communication trends in the food industry, and will also learn to work on location and in the studio creating food-based content. In addition, they will be introduced to food styling techniques.

LART-311: Food and Cultures: France

In this class, you will study the regional foods, drinks, and foodways of France to better understand evolving global food culture and food systems. Through focused readings and experiential activities, we will look at food traditions and heritage, etiquette and manners, the technologies of food and drink production, the social impacts of food habits, regionality and terroir, and the challenges of the global landscape.

LART-312: Food and Cultures: Italy

In this class, you will study the regional foods, drinks, and foodways of Italy to better understand evolving global food culture and food systems. Through focused readings and experiential activities, we will look at food traditions and heritage, etiquette and manners, the technologies of food and drink production, the social impacts of food habits, regionality and terroir, and the challenges of the global landscape.

LART-313: Food and Cultures: Spain

In this class, you will study the regional foods, drinks, and foodways of Spain to better understand evolving global food culture and food systems. Through focused readings and experiential activities, we will look at food traditions and heritage, etiquette and manners, the technologies of food and drink production, the social impacts of food habits, regionality and terroir, and the challenges of the global landscape.

LART-317: Food in Film

This course seeks to turn students from passive viewers to informed and involved critics of food in film. Students will examine food films as a unique genre, and jump into the academic conversation of film analysis through in-class discussions, papers and a final project. The course's main arc follows cultural issues raised by U.S. food films released between 1990 and 2015, as well as their antecedents, as appropriate, and a selection of films released after 2015. For each film, students will examine food's role in crafting a cultural statement. Areas of focus include film's portrayals of U.S. restaurants and consumer consumption, the role of women in the industry, the objectification of women and food, the portrayal of domestic masculinity, the reflection of identity in animated films, and the commodification of ethnicity.

LART-320: Food Writing

In this course, students will write various assignments, essays and stories that demonstrate their ability to read and think critically about food through a variety of food writing techniques, changing the shape of their writing to match the requirements of each method. At the midpoint and the course conclusion, students will submit a portfolio of their work. Portfolio collections will include assigned writing pieces and a reflection on the writing process. Additionally, at the course's conclusion, students will present their written work in a multimedia format for the class. Readings include essays, articles, and literature.

LART-325: American Freedom: A People's History of the Constitution

This course examines the evolution of constitutionally protected rights in the history of the United States, as well as the social, political, and economic forces that have helped shape the creation and dissemination of those rights, and the extent to which those rights have advanced the cause of freedom in America. The course materials focus on the creation of the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and constitutional amendments. Attention is paid to the historical periods in which these amendments came to fruition and how the amendments and the Supreme Court decisions that followed have helped shape American freedom. The course concludes with an assessment of the relevance of the Constitution in the 21st century.

LART-330: Feasting and Fasting in Latin America

This liberal arts elective explores the role of feasting and fasting in Latin American culture and literary traditions from pre-Colonial times to the twentieth century. This includes an examination of the relationship between food consumption, religious practices, rituals of passage, gender roles, and culinary traditions in Latin America.

LART-335: Ancient Foods in a Modern World: Latin American Crops in the Global Arena

Around the world, attention is being paid to unfamiliar ingredients emerging from Pre-Columbian Latin American foodways. Often these ancient foods are marketed for their nutritional value, exoticism, and "authenticity." Global interest in crops such as quinoa and amaranth has created an economic boom for producers, but often with the effect of driving the rural villagers who traditionally consumed these crops out of the marketplace in favor of first-world gourmets. While a great deal of traditional farming knowledge was lost during the Columbian Exchange, most of the ingredients being "discovered" today have enjoyed a long history of uninterrupted cultivation and consumption in their lands of origin. This class seeks to address the culture of colonialism and globalization that allows such ingredients to be simultaneously "discovered" and exploited, and the various issues of agency, ownership, and social justice that underlie the adoption of new foods from Latin America.

LART-336: Latinx in the United States

This interdisciplinary course is an introduction to Latinx in the Unites States. It focuses on the contemporary social, racial and economic challenges they experience in their country. The course also explores the contributions of Latinx to business, education, medicine, the food industry, and the arts. Some of the topics discussed are the origin of Latinx in the U.S., the reasons fueling modern immigration, social and class differences amongst different groups, racial discrimination, gender bias and inequalities, religious beliefs, and entrepreneurship. The course seeks to engage students to share their insight about topics discussed in class, the assigned readings, and their personal experiences.

LART-337: African American Chefs and Southern Food

In no other time has the conversation of southern food been more passionate. Major debates have been surrounded by the authenticity of dishes, how they are prepared and who can claim the tradition of southern food. Often the holders of these traditions are overlooked. In this course we will examine the stories of the enslaved and freed cooks from Charleston, who through their skill created the authentic cuisine still alive today. This course examines the food of the South as it related to the ingredients that make up the African Diaspora. We will examine these things not only through foodways but through, race relations, gender roles, power and privilege.

LART-340: Japanese Culture and History

This course will give students an overview of the currents of Japanese history, from its early beginnings in the Jomon Period through the post-World War II era. Students will examine various types of evidence that historians use to interpret the past, and gain an appreciation of the ways in which analysis-of classic works of literature, political documents, diaries, painting, weaponry, clothing, and poetry-reveals history as dramatic. That analysis of historical evidence also teaches us that history is something created by actual people who held opinions about their social worlds and made decisions in their daily lives. Finally, students will consider Japan's remarkable ecological conditions and the influence they have exerted on the societies that inhabited its islands.

LART-345: Mediterranean Food Studies

This course focuses on key historical, political, and socio-cultural contexts that have defined the food cultures of the Mediterranean region, to understand the region as a whole. With a multidisciplinary approach aiming to intersect theory with practice, it will examine factors that have shaped the culinary traditions of the region, including professional and home cooking, wealth and poverty, feasts and rituals, industrialization and globalization, rural and urban life, family structure, gender roles, sustainability, and innovation. The course will also build students' understanding of the Mediterranean diet and examine current trends reshaping traditional foodways, from changing employment patterns and the rising influence of processed food to the decline of active lifestyles.

LART-355: Research Methods

This course is a survey of research methods with an emphasis on comprehension of business and behavioral science research literature. Its purpose is to introduce students to quantitative and qualitative methods for conducting meaningful inquiry and research. Students will gain an overview of research intent and design, methodology and technique, format and presentation, and data management and analysis informed by commonly used statistical methods. Topics include: developing a hypothesis, a research problem, and related questions; framing the problem with the correct research methodology; collecting data that accurately addresses the research problem; measuring the effectiveness of a program; using data to make decisions; and presenting data to decision-makers and other consumers. The course will provide an overview of the important concepts of research design, data collection, statistical and interpretive analysis, and final report presentation.

LART-355A: Research Methods for Applied Food

This course is a survey of research methods with an emphasis on interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research in food studies. Its purpose is to introduce students to methods for conducting meaningful and ethical inquiry and research. Students will gain an overview of research intent and design, methodology and technique, format and presentation, and basic data management and analysis. Students will complete a research project during this course.

LART-360: Shakespeare: Play and Performance

This elective is an exploration of Shakespeare's plays as cultural phenomena, focusing on critical reading of the texts and the relationship between text and performance in popular film adaptations. It will accommodate both students new to Shakespeare and those with prior interest and background. Weekly seminar meetings will involve close reading of plays from all four Shakespearean genres (comedies, tragedies, histories, and romances), as well as viewing and discussion of film versions by directors such as Orson Welles, Kenneth Branagh, Peter Greenaway, and Akira Kurosawa.

LART-400: A Sense of Place: Critical Perspectives on the California Wine Industry

This interdisciplinary course seeks to provide a cultural, historical, and socioeconomic context for the modern California wine industry. Students in this course will not only read about the history and culture of California wine, but also will, by meeting and engaging with visiting speakers, be able to take part in academic and practical conversations that will expand the discourse. Students will be introduced to the social and historical chronology, major events, salient issues, and controversies of the California wine industry through assigned readings, films, and interaction and discourse with experts in order to place California wine in both the professional and larger culture.

LART-405: Traditional Foodways, Culinary Customs, and Ingredients of Asia

This course provides an introduction to primary historical documents, historiographical analysis, and literary texts related to Asia's contribution to world cuisine. In the various contexts of the build-up of ethnic identity, colonialism, the birth of nationalism, and de-colonization in different geographical regions, we will follow the history of ingredients, culinary practices, and the changes of trade routes that were related to food systems, from the Paleolithic to Modernity. At a macro level, the foodways will be followed along past and present migratory patterns, and across borders between nation-states, religious communities, and conflict areas. We will also make an inquiry into the symbolism of food in the context of the domestic space, and try to analyze family patterns related to the acquisition, shopping and storage, preparation, consumption, and disposal of food in a domestic setting at different stages of history. Apart from immersion trips to Southeast Asian countries, we will visit museums and markets to connect past theories and symbols to present techniques, behavioral patterns, and representations related to food.