The course examines several dimensions of food insecurity. It starts with an examination of rising hunger globally then assesses household food insecurity in the U.S. Discussions will cover access to food in urban and rural areas of the U.S. The course will also examine the research and conceptualization of food systems as analyze concepts such as food deserts, food oases, food swamps, and food grasslands. We will examine understudied parts of food systems such as urban farms, community and school gardens, subsistence fishing, hunting, and food gathering activities. It will also examine food production and food acquisition strategies in low-income areas. Students in the course will also examine the role of farmers markets, food assistance programs, etc., in providing access to food. Students will also examine the impact of food insecurity on health as well as racial and economic disparities in access to food.
There will be mandatory fieldtrips in this course. Field trips will be made in Ann Arbor as well as to Ypsilanti, Detroit, Flint, and elsewhere depending on time and scheduling availability. In addition to analyzing the data on food insecurity, students will be conducting research on food availability.