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The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS) is a prominent professional organization which provides an international forum to engage in the cross-disciplinary study of food, agriculture, and health, as well as an opportunity for examining the values that underlie various visions of food and agricultural systems. From a base of philosophers, sociologists, and anthropologists, AFHVS has grown to include scientists, scholars, and practitioners in areas ranging from agricultural production and social science to nutrition policy and the humanities. AFHVS encourages participation by the growing community of researchers and professionals exploring alternative visions of the food system from numerous perspectives and approaches, including local and regional food systems; alternative food movements; agricultural and food policies, agricultural sustainability, food justice, issues of local and global food security, and food sovereignty.

In a series of visioning sessions and membership surveys between 2012 and 2015, the Agriculture, Food, and Human Values Society has collaboratively discussed its vision and values as a learning community, putting our mission into practice more operationally via an emphasis on:

  • Supportive, collaborative community

  • Relational process orientation

  • Social justice & sustainability

  • Critical thinking from multiple perspectives.

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AFHVS provides members the opportunity to meet and discuss programs, theories, and research ideas of common interest. We do this through annual conferences and professional communications and networking.  Agriculture and Human Values is the official journal of the Society. Like the Society, it seeks to create educational and scholarly affiliations among the humanities, the social sciences, food and nutrition studies, and the agricultural disciplines, and to promote an ethical, social, and ecological understanding of agricultural and food systems.

Finding Home in the "Wilderness": Explorations in Belonging in Circumpolar Food Systems

University of Alaska Anchorage
June 26-29, 2019

The 2019 meeting will be hosted by the University of Alaska Anchorage, in collaboration with Alaska Pacific University. The conference theme, Finding Home in the “Wilderness,” invites attendees to critically engage with and problematize the idea of wilderness. We acknowledge the concept of wilderness as a contentious one, influenced by Western notions of separation, dominance, and later, preservation. The conference taking place in the Circumpolar North, and specifically in the diverse, multiethnic urban setting of Anchorage reminds visitors that wilderness is not something to be sought after on a hiking excursion. Rather, it is a factor that may influence our food practices, such as the harvest of wild foods, economic and climatic constraints on production, and issues around access, storage, utilization, and distribution. Additionally, philosophical conceptualizations of nature exist in a specific power hierarchy, where rational and neoliberal systemic approaches push against traditional and ecological ways of knowing that problematize the distinction between “wilderness” and “civilization.”

Visit the conference website at https://www.uaa.alaska.edu/academics/college-of-arts-and-sciences/programs/ASFS/index.cshtml. Abstract submission has closed, but conference registration is now open! Full registration details are available here. The conference program is now available online.

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