New module on the History of Food coming to Brookes
Tuesday, 11 April 2017
The Oxford Brookes University History team have introduced a new module on the history of food into their undergraduate degree.
The History of Food, Politics and Society will be available to third-year students from September
2017. It will explore the ways that food has shaped our society, and will
examine issues like colonialism, race, gender, famine and foodie fashions, as
well as some of the cultural taboos and national identities associated with
food, stretching from medieval times through to the modern period.
Students taking the module will be challenged to explore
their own thoughts and philosophies around food. A special feature of the
module will be the opportunity to access primary sources found in the Brookes special collections, which
includes the personal library of the distinguished cookery writer Jane Grigson
(1928-1990), and the National Brewing Library.
The module is led by Dr Alysa Levene, author of Cake: a
Slice through History, and Professor Waltraud Ernst, who recently hosted an
International Research symposium around alcohol consumption and drinking
cultures across history.
Dr Alysa Levene and the History staff were “inspired to
put this module together to get students to think about the way that food can
take us straight into people's ways of thinking, their relationships with one
another, and their surroundings. My own research has shown me how something as
frivolous as cake can reveal tales of shortage and plenty, celebration,
childhood and body image, health, affluence and international trade.”
out more about the History course at
Oxford Brookes University