At Ryerson University, I teach the sociology of food and eating as well as qualitative research methods. These are both undergraduate classes. In my courses I foreground a critical lens. By this I mean that I encourage students to think about how social and political forces shape food systems and knowledge production respectively.
In the sociology of food eating (that’s SOC808), we explore how society and social processes shape the food system and the way we eat. We unpack the ways in which the global industrial food system is built on colonialism. We consider how colonialism is an on-going process and we investigate its impact today. During the semester, we talk about food culture and identity, race and the food system, the sociology of marketplaces, how gender plays out in the kitchen, and so much more. This course is very popular at Ryerson and is taught by several different professors, each giving their own flavour to the topic.
In qualitative research methods (SSH301 at Ryerson), we explore qualitative research design and research methods. We question commonly held ideas about research and the ways we come to know something. We talk about ontology, methodology and epistemology and we consider how knowledge is produced. Students in my class get a chance to construct their own research projects and we often partner with the Community Engaged Learning & Teaching office at Ryerson to provide students with hands-on experience and enrich their classroom learning.
I work with graduate students at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health in Master’s of Public Health practica and co-supervise a doctoral student in the Social and Behavioural Health Sciences program.