When Babson Entrepreneur in Residence Gail Simmons suggested that we include A Place at the Table in our Food Days program, I wanted to see it right away. The film had crossed my radar at this year’s TEDx Manhattan: Changing the Way We Eat where event organizers sneak-previewed the trailer.
The trailer alone gave me goose bumps – as did this photo from Greg Kaufmann’s article on hunger for The Nation.
I knew the film would have a strong run at Food Day events across the country. But I wasn’t sure about its place at Babson, given our penchant for gatherings that are high on interaction — emphasis on action. We showed The Apple Pushers at first national Food Day, and my sense then was that a film screening was too passive for our audience.
But halfway through the preview copy, I changed my mind. A Place at the Table is perfect for Babson.
For our immense international community: the film shows a side of America that I doubt few (if any) of you have ever seen. And for our American students: even those of you actively working in food, our domestic understanding of hunger right here at home – next door and down the street – is scant at best.
A Place at the Table is great documentary film. It does not manipulate the viewer into a particular stance. It simply permits four remarkable and very real people – of different ages, races, and geographies – to share their stories. Against these personal narratives, the portrait of a system is held up – complete with lessons in history, culture and politics. Food Sol friend and acclaimed national food writer Corby Kummer describes its finest qualities far better than I.
Immediately following the film, Gail Simmons will lead a panel discussion with national food heroes:
- Michael Jacobson of Center for Science in the Public Interest and founder of Food Day
- Michel Nischan of Wholesome Wave and visionary behind the Rx Fruit and Vegetable program
- Karen Spiller of Boston Collaborative for Food and Fitness and lifelong pioneer for healthy and sustainable communities in Greater Boston
So, come to Babson (or, if you’re already here, to Olin Hall) tomorrow at 5:30. You do not want to miss this one. For those of you busy in class or at work during our daytime programs, the film and panel are our only evening program. Full details and registration at babson.edu/FoodDay
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