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UIS political art series looks at "The Future of Food"

January 16, 2007

Contact: Richard Gilman-Opalsky, 217/206-8328, rgilm3@uis.edu

SPRINGFIELD - The University of Illinois at Springfield series Political Art and the Public Sphere will resume for the spring semester on Monday, January 29, with a screening of the film "The Future of Food" at 6 p.m. in Brookens Auditorium, lower level of Brookens Library on the UIS campus. Both the film and the discussion session that will follow are free and open to the public.

"What do globalization, privatization, and new technology have to do with your food?" asks series facilitator Richard Gilman-Opalsky, UIS assistant professor of political philosophy. "Many people are surprised to learn that unlabeled, patented, genetically engineered foods have been quietly making their way into American grocery stores for the past decade."

Gilman-Opalsky explained that, beyond potential health risks, some also see the implications in government policies and the push toward globalization as cause for alarm as genetically altered crops are introduced into the food supply.

"The Future of Food" offers a critical investigation into this trend and examines the complex web of market and political forces that are changing what people eat as multinational corporations move toward control of the world's food system.

Each month, Political Art and the Public Sphere will feature a showing or performance of some kind of "political art," followed by a group discussion of the issues it raises. "The basic idea behind PAPS is to consider how 'art' raises provocative social and political questions," Gilman-Opalsky said.

"Public spheres are the places where people come together to communicate, to evaluate, and to circulate ideas and arguments," he added. "In the public sphere, people form a collective political opinion and will. Ultimately and ideally, the public sphere brings the interests and demands of the public to bear on those who hold power."

For more information about this program or the PAPS series, contact Gilman-Opalsky by phone at 206-8328 or by e-mail at rgilm3@uis.edu.



The University of Illinois at Springfield, one of three U of I campuses, is a small, public liberal arts university that offers 42 degree programs: 21 bachelorís, 20 masterís, and the Doctorate of Public Administration. UIS has a special mission in public affairs and service and is known for extraordinary internships, a wireless campus, extensive online offerings, and a commitment to teaching.

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