There is a class at the University of Kentucky called “Taco Literacy: Public Advocacy and Mexican Food in the US South.” A syllabus typically includes a statement by the professor about what he or she hopes the students will learn in the class. In an interview, the Taco Literacy professor (Steven Alvarez) gives what might be the best all time class objective:
“At the very end of the course, my students will be generators of knowledge, have a portfolio full of multimedia food journalism, and they will be over the fajita stage of Mexican food.”
As for the books for the class, they look awesome too. Here is his description of the readings: “Our first book is Planet Taco: A Global History of Mexican Food. Then we have the Tacopedia and Taco USA. Lastly, a book solely on tortillas called Tortillas: A Cultural History, because I try to break down to my students that a really good taco will always depend on the tortilla.”
Here is a link to the Taco Literacy website. It is one of the most creative and fun class websites I’ve seen (granted, this is a low bar, but still…). Each square is a click-able link to that day’s discussion. Some of my favorites are: “The Tamale Trail of ….Mississippi,” “Sombreros and Mariachis,” and “Taco Literacy Around the Nation: You’re famosos”
You gotta love a syllabus that has this disclaimer all in caps! “THOUGH TACOS ARE EXPLICITLY NAMED IN THE COURSE, THEY NEED NOT BE THE FOCUS FOR YOUR RESEARCH.”
I teach a class at OU called Mexican Economic Development. While it has drawn a fair amount of students, imagine the number that would have enrolled had I taught Taconomics instead!