Learning outcomes of the course unit
At the end of the course the student is expected to be able to:
- possess the theoretical-cultural knowledge to understand food writing, both digital and "analogical";
- use all the tools of food writing, which is a professional writing technique that unites more genres and aims to tell food and wine in a creative, synesthetic and engaging way, not merely giving information or having business objectives;
- analyze and evaluate, with autonomy of judgment and critical capacity, the quality of a content in the food and beverage sector, to understand if the text combines informative contents with a form capable of striking the reader's attention and leaving a mark;
- enter into a relationship with food & beverage companies and media in a professional and ethical manner;
- know how to act in an editorial, journalistic, business and tourist context, learning to change the communication methods to meet the objectives of the public and of the clients.
Course contents summary
The course is a "writing gym" with a professional aim, where the theory trains at the parallel of practice, through a series of writing exercises and the testimony in the classroom of some authors, journalists, copywriter and digital PR experts for the food and wine companies of the Parma area.
Teaching’s content is divided into a series of theoretical and practical modules that, starting from a general overview on food writing and its main areas of action, focuses on the food writer characteristics, aims and resources and on specific issues, also connected to content marketing and social media marketing.
The course’s program will address the following points:
1. Food writing and its main areas of action: identikit of a professional writing, based on senses, emotion and memory, which contains in itself different genres. Focus on publishing, journalism, marketing, tourism.
2. Objectives and axes on the food writer table: from the passion for food and wine to the accuracy of language, from originality to the ability to engage tha public.
3. Food and beverage publishing: from manuals to cookbooks, from essays to novels. The testimony in the classroom: Francesca Zecca, head of editorial coordination at Food Group.
4. Food journalism: definition, genres and language; online journalism and emerging forms. The testimony in the classroom: Manuela Soressi, professional food and wine journalist.
5. Food and wine tourism: how to promote a territory, its typical products and its culinary traditions through writing. The testimony in the classroom: Barbara Valla, press officer and expert in the promotion of food and wine tourism.
6. Writing for companies: from company monographs to press releases. The testimony in the classroom: Fabrizio Raimondi, head of the press office and external relations of the Parmigiano Reggiano Consortium.
7. Food storytelling: strategies and techniques to build stories to communicate brands, products, services, companies and territories.
8. Food blogging: how to open and maintain an information food blog over time for yourself or on behalf of a company.
9. Content marketing: the importance of creating good content to communicate effectively a company.
10. Social media editing: the production process of content, its functions and how to use it on social networks.
11. The ethics of communication and the professional ethics of the food writer: from respect for the substantial truth of the facts to narrative completeness, to the spirit of service.
- Course's Slide*
- Villa M., Professione Food Writer. Ricettario di scrittura con esercizi sodi, strapazzati e à la coque, Dario Flaccovio Editore, Palermo 2018
*The slides used to support the lessons will be loaded weekly on the Elly platform; to download them, it will be necessary to register for the online course.
The slides are an integral part of the fundamental bibliography, therefore it is advisable for non-attending students to download the teaching material from the Elly platform and to follow the instructions provided by the teacher through the platform itself.
The course consists of:
- lectures with the use of multimedia tools, alternating with others, of a heuristic-Socratic type, in which the active contribution of students is solicited, through collective discussion and confrontation;
- case studies, presented and critically analyzed;
- classroom exercises, to be carried out in groups or individually;
- testimonies in the classroom by food and wine journalists and communication experts.
Assessment methods and criteria
The summative assessment of learning involves two moments:
- an oral interview on the topics covered during the course (slide downloadable from the Elly platform) and the book indicated in the basic bibliography (this affects 60% on the final evaluation);
- the presentation of a thematic exercise carried out by the single student (this affects the remaining 40%).