Food ethics focus of special colloquium

A special colloquium on “The Ethics of Diet” will be held Friday, Sept. 26, in the Women’s Building Formal Lounge.

The symposium, which runs from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., will focus on food and energy and the future of food.

It is free and open to the public and sponsored by the Center for the Study of Ethics and Human Values, American Culture Studies Program, the departments of History, English, Anthropology and Philosophy in Arts & Sciences, and the College of Arts & Sciences.

“We hope that this conference will engage faculty, students and community leaders in a wide-ranging discussion of the ethical issues surrounding diet today,” said Corinna Treitel, Ph.D., assistant professor of history in Arts & Sciences. “These include diet in its relation to animal rights and factory farming; intensive agriculture and its environmental costs; ethnic cuisines and colonial legacies; the food industry and its impact on national eating habits; fast food and its social effects on both workers and consumers; and the challenges and opportunities posed by genetically modified foods.”

Four speakers will address various food-related topics: historian Warren Belasco, Ph.D., author of “Appetite for Change: How the Counterculture Took on the Food Industry”; nutritionist Joan Dye Gussow, Ed.D., who wrote the best-seller “This Organic Life: Confessions of a Suburban Homesteader”; philosopher Lisa Heldke, Ph.D., author of “Exotic Appetites: Ruminations of a Food Adventurer” and many other books; and anthropologist Sidney Mintz, who wrote “Sweetness and Power: The Place of Sugar in Modern History.”

Attendees will have the option to purchase an “ethical lunch” and participate in a lunch discussion with the speakers.

For more information, e-mail Treitel at