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ThinK series at West campus sets February events

February 04, 2011

February offerings in the ThinK (Thursdays in Kiva) series at ASU’s West campus feature a mixture of events celebrating Black History Month and others focusing on the yearlong theme of “Much Ado About Food.”

Events are free and open to the public (visitor parking on campus costs $2 per hour) and are held in the Kiva Lecture Hall, in the Sands Classroom Building at 4701 W. Thunderbird Road in Phoenix.

ThinK is sponsored by ASU’s New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, the core college on the West campus.

The schedule is:

Feb. 3, 5:00 p.m.: Black History Month Film: “Soul Food”

Sunday dinner at Mother Joe’s is a mouth-watering, 40-year tradition. As seen through the eyes of her grandson Ahmad, love and laughs are always on the menu, despite the usual rivalries simmering between his mom Maxine and her sisters Teri and Bird. But when serious bickering starts to tear the family apart, the good times suddenly stop. Now it’s up to Ahmad to get everyone back together and teach them the true meaning of soul food. This 1997 film was the basis for a television series on Showtime that ran from 2000 to 2004.

Feb. 10, 4:00 p.m.: Why we like the foods we do: the good, the bad and the fattening

This talk will cover where our food preferences come from and how they can be changed. While there are some genetic differences in sensitivity to tastes and preferences for tastes, most of our food preferences are learned and therefore can be changed. The presenter is Elizabeth D. “Betty” Capaldi, who became ASU’s University Provost and Executive Vice President in 2006. Born in New York City, she received her bachelor's degree from the University of Rochester and her Ph.D. degree in experimental psychology from the University of Texas at Austin. Capaldi has contributed more than 65 chapters and articles to the scientific literature, co-authored three editions of an introductory psychology textbook, and edited two books on the psychology of eating.

Feb. 17, 5:00 p.m.: The Techno-Bucolic: How animals and machines make us human

Life down on the farm has always been technological. The hoe and plow seem benign but modern machinery appears less so. How we farm tells us something about how we think and live. This talk will looks at the trajectory of modern technological farming and examine the implications of a culture enthralled by technology. If all farming is technological, can we ever arrive at a humanely scaled techno-bucolic? The presenter is Ronald Broglio, a faculty member in ASU’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, on the Tempe campus.

Feb. 24, 5:00 p.m.: Black History Month documentary: “Stories from the Other Side”

“Stories from the Other Side” is a collection of interviews from the Fulbright-Hays Group Project Abroad scholarship participants’ monthlong journey to Ghana, West Africa, last summer, shedding light on Ghana’s culture, people, language, spirituality, traditions and rich history. The documentary, produced by New College faculty members Charles St. Clair and Duku Anokye, captures the experiences of faculty and graduate students from ASU and teachers from the Phoenix Union School District. “Stories from the Other Side” explores the transformation of the teachers and students as they visited slave castles, museums, took part in language and dance classes, and interviewed Ghanaian about their lives, their memories about slavery and the impact of contemporary human trafficking.

For more information, call (602) 543-4521 or email