Embodied Food Politics: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Embodied Food Politics

1st Edition

By Michael S. Carolan


190 pages

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While the phenomenon of embodied knowledge is becoming integrated into the social sciences, critical geography, and feminist research agendas it continues to be largely ignored by agro-food scholars. This book helps fill this void by inserting into the food literature living, feeling, sensing bodies and will be of interest to food scholars as well as those more generally interested in the phenomenon known as embodied realism. This book is about the materializations of food politics; "materializations", in this case, referring to our embodied, sensuous, and physical connectivities to food production and consumption. It is through these materializations, argues Carolan, that we know food (and the food system more generally), others and ourselves.


'Carolan brilliantly demonstrates that bodies tuned to Global Food can, through shared practice in new spaces such as urban chickens, seed exchanges, and community supported agriculture, create tacit knowledge for innovation in food systems that more closely link production with consumption. He supports his reflexive deep descriptive case studies by a wide-ranging and well-chosen literature that he both critiques and takes to the next level.' Cornelia Butler Flora, Iowa State University, USA 'Michael Carolan provides a timely analysis of the changes that creep into our experiences with alterations of food production and distribution. Combining interviews and reminiscences with perspectives from sociology, history, and philosophy, this book explores what is being lost as food production loses its singular locations, as well as what can be regained with a greater appreciation of embodied knowledge�.' Carolyn Korsmeyer, SUNY, Buffalo, USA 'Michael Carolan’s Embodied Food Politics explains a lot. It goes deeper than the current impassioned food politics and reaches the core of where the passion actually emanates from, or should. Whether it’s heritage seeds or heritage breeds, he makes the point that behind these are individuals and communities who remember and have cared - people who would feel incomplete without the throbbing connections to the past and to one’s fellows that these seeds and breeds allow and signify. It’s all in the dwelling, and this book urges us to begin.' Virginia D. Nazarea, University of Georgia, USA 'Michael Carolan creatively advances debate in the alternative food literature on the experiential politics of eating and growing food. Building on an impressive synthesis of the latest theoretical developments in sociology and geography… clearly and concisely written…' Environment and Planning A '… I found Carolan's prose clear and brisk; his introduction and body chapters incorporate a real sense of the field of food sociology

Table of Contents

Contents: Thinking about food relationally; Some backstory; Making sense with CSAs; Thinking with Heritage Seed Banks; The sensibilities of chicken coops; Cultivating communities; Steps to an ecology of social change; References; Index.

About the Author

Michael S. Carolan, Associate Professor of Sociology, Colorado State University, USA

About the Series

Critical Food Studies

Critical Food Studies
The study of food has seldom been more pressing or prescient. From the intensifying globalization of food, a world-wide food crisis and the continuing inequalities of its production and consumption, to food's exploding media presence, and its growing re-connections to places and people through 'alternative food movements', this series promotes critical explorations of contemporary food cultures and politics. Building on previous but disparate scholarship, its overall aims are to develop innovative and theoretical lenses and empirical material in order to contribute to - but also begin to more fully delineate - the confines and confluences of an agenda of critical food research and writing. Of particular concern are original theoretical and empirical treatments of the materialisations of food politics, meanings and representations, the shifting political economies and ecologies of food production and consumption and the growing transgressions between alternative and corporatist food networks.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Human Geography