Sarah Crews, art student in Patrick Mayton's Drawing II class, created these works of food art. The cake was painted in Drawing II class while the still life was a project she completed during the 2020 quarantine.
Every year, the Pi Pi chapter of Phi Theta Kappa participates in a year-long, research-driven project known as Honors in Action. In 2019-2020, the honor society conducted an award-winning foodways project. This is the abstract from the group’s award application: While discussing To the Seventh Generation: Inheritance and Legacy, stories about food abounded. Chapter members regaled one another with tales of grandparents, backyard barbecues, favorite dishes, and curiosities about the future of cuisine. Early research indicated that scholarly studies of food were vast and interdisciplinary. To help us focus our inquiry, the chapter used documentaries and programs on Netflix to shape discussion. These inspired our research question: how can diverse food inheritances help build legacies of trust and understanding? With the help of our college librarians, we narrowed our search and eventually synthesized over 20 scholarly sources to conclude that food is essential to identity construction and community building. The chapter also learned that the cultural context of food – the rituals and stories – are just important as the dishes themselves. Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the chapter initiated a web-based project designed for people to read other’s stories and share their own. Anchoring this website were three professionally produced films featuring chapter members chronicling their own food stories. In five weeks, the chapter collected 221 stories which we plan to share with a historical archive. Feedback on the project expressed gratitude for helping people make human connections during a pandemic that has often isolated people.
Each semester, Theatre Appreciation students are assigned to write a three- to five-minute play that adheres to Aristotle's unities of time, place, and action. Characters, conflict, and setting are randomly selected by a roll of the instructor's die. After the plays are written, students then create a marketing poster that includes a directorial concept blurb, scenic and costume designs, and casting of real actors as their lead characters. This fall, students were encouraged to creatively include food in their plays. They were advised that food did not necessarily need to be the central theme, but to find clever ways to incorporate it. These three examples exemplify their efforts.