F2F: Feast or Famine

The 2010-2011 Feet to the Fire program was dedicated to the issues of food and hunger. This topic intersected with courses taught in many academic departments, lecture series and artist works. It was also the theme of the First Year Matters program, which included readings, faculty presentations and the Common Moment for incoming freshman. 

Cassie Meador: Drift

Cassie Meador performed her newest work, Drift, in October at Wesleyan with the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange. The performance is a comic, provocative and wistful piece that asks us to think about where our food comes from as farmlands are converted to strip malls and California peaches end up in Georgia. Meador also taught ENVS 346/DANC 346 The Ecology of Eating in the Fall Semester. Meador is a choreographer/dancer/educator with the acclaimed Liz Lerman Dance Exchange based in Washington, D.C. 

Art and Appetite

September 16 - October 24, 2011

Davison Arts Center

This exhibition of more than 40 prints and photographs from the Davison Art Center collection explored the depiction of food and drink across five centuries. Works included Pieter Bruegel the Elder designed the engravings Fat Kitchen and Thin Kitchen, 1563, as comic allegories of feast and famine. Käthe Kollwitz protested starvation among the working classes in Germany. Pop artist Claes Oldenburg monumentalized modern fast food with Flying Pizza, 1964, and Dieter Roth used cheese as a printing material in his Small Landscape, 1969.

Food for Thought

September 8 - December 10, 2010

Olin Library

This exhibition highlighted Special Collections and Archives resources related to food as a social, political and historical phenomenon.  On display were agricultural manuals, early cookbooks and the archives of Wesleyan’s 19th-century Physiological Society and “father of nutrition science” Wilbur Olin Atwater, as well as recent artists’ books that explore climate change and the commodification of food.


DANC/ENVS 346: Ecology of Eating: Reporting from the Fields of Science and Art

THEA 205: Prison Outreach Through Theater

Hist/AMST/ENVS 135: American Food

Common Reading:

  • Paarlberg, Robert L. "The Global Food Fight." Foreign Affairs.  Vol. 79. No. 3 May/June 2000, pp. 24-38.
  • Pollan, Michael. “Farmer in Chief.” New York Times Magazine. October 9, 2008. 
  • Sen, Amartya. Development as Freedom. Westminster, MD, USA. Alfred A. Knopf Incorporated, 1999. Chapter 7, pp. 160-188.
  • Kingsolver, Barbara. The Poisonwood Bible. Exodus, Leah Price Ngemba.  pp. 445-459 United States. Harper Flamingo, 1998.
  • Catton Jr., William R. Overshoot, The Ecological Basis of Revolutionary Change. University of Illinois Press, Chicago, 1980. Chapter 6, The Processes That Matter, pp. 95-114.
  • Kingsolver, Barbara. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, A Year of Food Life.  Harper Collins, New York, 2007.  Chapter 1, Called Home, pp. 1-22.
  • Cassie Meador, Drift
  • Superflex


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