The anthropology department at Indiana University proudly announces a
PhD in the anthropology of food, beginning the fall semester of 2007.
While food studies of all kinds are increasing in popularity at
universities around the world, and degrees in nutrition and food
marketing are available, IU offers the first program in the world
leading to a PhD in the social science of food.

Food connects a host of contemporary issues, ranging from obesity to
ecological dead zones to fair-trade coffee. Students will enjoy
opportunities to work on a wide range of food-related topics in a
department whose diverse menu already offers courses on a wide variety of topics including chocolate’s history, other primates’ diets, and the cause of famine.

Why Indiana? The anthropology department at IU has a unique combination
of food specialists with expertise in the sciences, humanities, and
social sciences. Students in the Food Studies Program will further have
the opportunity to study with scholars in other departments and programs
including history, nutrition, cultural studies and biology. This
diversity will allow students to specialize in human nutrition, the
evolution of the human diet, origins of food production, food in ancient
civilizations, and contemporary social and economic issues related to
health, culture, economics and globalization. The Food Studies Program
combines the sciences and humanities, contributing to the new health
sciences and human biology initiatives, and boosting the national
visibility of the university.

Indiana is home to a broad array of old and new immigrant communities,
which create a rich context for understanding the importance of food in
culture, and the growing globalization of the world food system.
Bloomington itself has been at the forefront of the farmer=92s market
revival, serving as a regional distribution center for organic groceries
and produce with a rich and sophisticated ethnic food culture. Building
on the rapid growth of culinary tourism into a major industry, faculty
and students in the Food Studies Program will team with local business
communities to increase Bloomington’s prominence and visibility as a
food city and Indiana as a new center of cuisine. Bloomington has a
Slow Food chapter, a farmers’ market, two microbreweries, several CSAs,
and “culinary tourism trails.”

In this program, food fuels the connections between people, places,
cultures, and across the ages. The anthropology department has already
placed students in service-learning research and outreach with a local
food bank. Future projects may include work with local farmers, food
assistance programs for the poor and elderly, gardeners, and ethnic food
markets.

The IU Department of Anthropology is growing into one of the largest and
most important programs in the country. With 36 core faculty and
affiliates throughout other departments, the program boasts over 110
graduate students studying for advanced degrees in linguistic
anthropology, cultural anthropology, archaeology, bioanthropology, human
evolutionary studies, and archaeology and social context. The Food
Studies Program accelerates this growth, responding to the interest in
food within the field of anthropology.

This new PhD builds on the successes of the gastronomy and food studies
MA programs at New York University and Boston University, offering a
more advanced degree based on substantial independent research projects.

IU anthropologists will continue to expand and develop their
relationship with the new Food Studies MA degree program at the
University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies.

Due to the strong demand for this training, the department has already
received many inquiries. We will provide support for PhD graduates to
step into open job markets in academia and industry, where the
challenges of globalization and cultural diversity have prompted new
interest in anthropology as an integrative discipline.

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