RE-THINKING SOUP:The State of School Lunch-History, Policy and Popular Imagination at UIC Hull House

RE-THINKING SOUP   The State of School Lunch-History, Policy and Popular Imagination  

TUES Oct 15 | 6-7 PM    at the Hull House, UIC Campus,  Halsted between Taylor and Harrison.

Museum open 1 hour before and after program.


Each day, 30.6 million students eat lunch through the National School Lunch Program. It is the largest public nutrition program for school-aged children. For the last 15 years school lunch has become a hotly contested issue- nutrition, food insecurity and child obesity squarely at the center of the local and national discussion. Everyone from Alice Waters, Ann Cooper-the Renegade Lunch Lady, chef Jamie Oliver, Michelle Obama, even comedian Sarah Silverman, have been asking how to make school lunch healthier and more sustainable.

In all the discussion, there are two groups that are often left out: the young people who eat the food and the “lunch ladies” who serve it. This week, during Re-Thinking Soup, we celebrate those voices as we open a new installation in Hull-House’s ongoing exhibition  “Unfinished Business: 21st Century Home Economics.” We teamed up with Street Level Youth Media and asked young people to make dynamic multi-media documentary shorts examining the lunch ladies (and gentlemen) of Chicago.

Come for  a bowl of delicious soup and equally satisfying conversation as we probe the history of school lunch and imagine the next phase of social change around this critical topic. We will be joined by:  Susan Levine, historian, Director of the Institute for the Humanities at UIC and author of School Lunch Politics: The Surprising History of America’s Favorite Welfare Program.  Nadia Sulayman, School Wellness Specialist with Chicago Public Schools.

Posted by UIC professor and neighbor Barbara Risman