Mesa Phil 102B Su14: Essay Prompt

Your assignment is to write a 3-5 page essay that examines some aspect of food and US food policy and relates that aspect to one of the authors we studied this semester. In class I will provide a number of resources that discuss food and food policy and your assignment is to pick one of these aspects and write a paper about it. These resources include the film Food Inc. and the PBS Envision special on food in San Diego. Some topics you might want to focus on are:
  • Treatment of Animals in Factory Farms
  • Food Safety
  • Conditions of Farm Laborers
  • Health and Nutrition of Food
  • Governmental Regulation of Food
  • The Obesity Epidemic in the US
Once you pick an aspect of the debate to focus on, you should then write a 3-5 page essay in which you examine that topic and relate the issues raised to one of the authors or ethical theories we discussed in class. In particular, I want to know what the author you pick would say about the issue that you are discussing. A successful paper will do the following:
  • Contain a well-articulated thesis statement that explains what the paper is about and takes a clear stand on the issues under discussion,
  • Provide a clear articulation of the food issue you have chosen (this will require some independent research and collection of data on your part),
  • Provide a clear articulation of those aspect of the philosopher's position that are relevant to your paper,
  • Apply the view of the philosopher to the issue at hand and explain what position the chosen philosopher would take on the issue, 
  • Conclude with your own analysis of the issue and whether or not you think the philosopher you have chosen is correct,
  • Properly cite (using MLA or CMS) all sources used in the paper.
Your paper should be typed, double-spaced and written in 10-12 point legible font. The final draft is due on the penultimate day of class, Monday, July 28. In addition to the final draft, there are a few pre-writing assignments that must be completed: 
  • You will need to select a topic and come up with a thesis statement for class on Wednesday, July 16. That is, you will need to have chosen which aspect of US food policy you want to study and which of the authors we have studied in class you want to relate that topic to. This material should be brought to class to turn in.
  • You will need to bring two copies of a rough draft of your paper to class on Wednesday, July 23 for in-class peer editing. Although this rough draft will not be graded, failure to bring a rough draft to class will result in an F on this assignment.