'Philosophy of food' discussed over dinner at the Oaks Neighborhood
During a monthly dinner hosted by the Oaks Neighborhood, Elon philosophy faculty members helped facilitate important conversations on the philosophy of food.
Each month, the Oaks Neighborhood hosts a neighborhood-wide dinner, complete with free catered food and drinks, which is open to all Oaks residents.
Every neighborhood dinner has an overarching theme that creates the basis for stimulating conversation among residents, staff and faculty alike. This month, the focus of discussion was the philosophy of food, with an emphasis on attachment to comfort foods, food waste, and general thoughts and feelings toward food.
To help facilitate discussion, Professors Nim Batchelor, Stephen Bloch-Schulman, Ann Cahill, Martin Fowler, Ryan Johnson, Shannon Lundeen and Rebecca Scott from the Department of Philosophy joined Oaks residents for dinner. Along with Jaimie Biermann, Community Director for the Oaks Neighborhood and Julie Justice, assistant professor of education and the faculty director for the Oaks Neighborhood, these faculty members were able to add immensely to the discussion. Students and faculty spoke freely about their own philosophies on food while enjoying a "southern style" meal of fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, green beans, cole slaw, corn bread muffins and sweet tea.
The dinner was a precursor to Robert Valgenti’s subsequent lecture on "The Philosophy of Food," in which he discussed the philosophical side, as well as the practical, technical and artistic aspects, of cooking. The lecture featured a live cooking demonstration featuring students in attendance as volunteer chefs. Elon students in the Cooking Club prepared over 100 dishes of the Italian custard, Zabaione to pass out to those in attendance at the lecture. Valgenti is an associate professor of philosophy at Lebanon Valley College, and was chosen to speak as a part of the Reynolds Lectures Series in Philosophy, organized by Ryan Johnson with assistance from Coordinator for Residential Campus Dining and Engagement, TJ Bowie.
The Oaks Neighborhood hosts events every Tuesday. Follow them on social media to stay up to date with the neighborhood!