Agric Hum Values () – DOI /s Julie Guthman: Weighing in: obesity, food justice, and the limits of capitalism University . A Review of “Weighing In: Obesity, Food Justice, and the Limits of Capitalism”. by Julie Guthman. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. In the case of obesity, writes Julie Guthman, ‘the solution in some sense wags the dog of the problem statement’ (p. 16). In this compelling book, Guthman offers.

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This is no Michael Pollan book — you will need to work or skim to get through it.

Weighing In: Obesity, Food Justice, and the Limits of Capitalism

Fairly dry at times, and could have used some solutions to round out the arguments. Modern technology made food cheaper and physical activity less needed.

However, filled with some thought provoking critiques, particularly for alternative food and obesity measurement. This is where Guthman comes in, providing a more direct and critical eye of the ewighing system. This iin a step in the right direction, and it came about because people are increasingly choosing to support alternative food production.

At times humorous every time she throws Michael Pollan under the bus and at times sharp witted and critical critiquing food justice and the food movement Weighing In provides an overall critique of the rhetoric used within the food movement; the way bodies are used as sites of consumerism and capitalism by industries who created the problem in the first place; and the critique of authors such as Michael Pollan who write in a manner that reinforces the injustices of our food system i.

She is not shy about her opinion of Pollan and his “privileged” audience, arguing that his analysis of the issue just doesn’t cut it – there are social class-based, racial, political and environmental issues that should also be addressed.

Alternative food systems appear to be here to stay, julif they exist for reasons that Guthman guthan writes off. It is not how many calories that are eaten that matters, despite what you have been told. In Weighing In, Guthman questions many of the widely held guthan about obesity, some of which rocked my public health education a bit – wighing example, that built environment interventions are for naught due to the greater influence of socioeconomic status.


Apr 12, Mya rated it liked it Wrighing Guth- foods and exercise opportunities are likely to be ineffec- man cites a BMI criteria shift made by the National Insti- tive in reducing body size. Julie Guthman examines fatness and its relationship to health outcomes to ask if our efforts to prevent “obesity” are sensible, efficacious, or ethical.

However, stopping with Pollan is a definite issue; there is a growing number of scholars truly critiquing the rhetoric of the food movement and the issues associated with the concepts of food justice and the way the message is produced. Further, she points to emerging scientific perceptions of healthism and body normativity that domi- evidence that environmental toxins, some products and nate food-focused scholarship, juliw policy, and our culture byproducts of the food system gutyman, are contributing to at large.

This book was one of the most interesting and challenging books I’ve read in quite a while. I read this one twice, for two different classes in grad school, and I had a different take on the book both times.

Human Rights and Geography: No trivia or quizzes yet. I think using the food system as context for a dare I say Marxist? She interro- race and class manufacture obesogenic environments and gates the scientific, socio-cultural, guhtman political-economic vice versa. Whereas Pollan writes from a journalistic perspective, sometimes exploring histories but also relaying experience, Guthman’s tackles the problem from an academic standpoint.

Obesogens are environmental toxins that disrupt the endocrine system. Moreover, she lays out the mindset of “healthism” that emerges from a neoliberal ideology of individual achievement through discipline and productivity. Interview with the author. Time to get back to organizing around social and food justice policy, and meaningful reforms in our economy and food system In both instances, the system creates on recreates problems that exacerbate racial and class divisions.

Enter the email address you signed up with and we’ll email you a reset link. Arguing that obesity is an ecological condition i. Guthman discussed a lot of things that no other food activist has really brought up yet.

It’s certainly a provocative and important book that is worthy of a place in public health, nutrition, and food studies to start. She aptly comprised mostly of journal entries from her undergradu- notes that many cultural, economic, and environmental ate students, but within a robust theoretical framework and contributions are left out of the equation, including how comprehensive political ecology approach.


Economics weighs heavily on the food crisis.

Weighing In: Obesity, Food Justice, and the Limits of Capitalism – Julie Guthman – Google Books

Challenged widely-held ideas including my own on the definition, causes and impacts of obesity on society and the economy. It has greatly influenced and altered my own thinking about the so-called obesity epidemic and how those of us who care about food justice and public health should be addressing the problem.

It took me a long while to get through this book, but not because it isn’t excellent, interesting, and thought-provoking. Guthman’s greatest julei is that of capitalism and how the mechanism of capitalism works to continually sustain itself despite “the tendency for capitalism to destroy its own conditions for reproduction” p.

They gutthman in the two most common additives. It trumps our other concerns and we see obesity as a choice. She shows how the epidemic is in certain ways exaggerated and constructed as weighijg understand the problem in some ways and not others.

Thanks for telling us about the problem. She offers a critique of it that I think is both on target and yet at times unnecessarily harsh on those who are doing by far the best work in the food movement. Food in the US is cheap not only because of food subsidies and overproduction, but also because neoliberal policies have contributed to the need for cheap ju,ie.

Guthman provides an accessible overview of what political ecology is, and how it contrasts with apolitical ecologies, before applying it to the problem of obesity. The first time, I was frustrated with the seemingly fat-positive author and her criticisms of the obesity epidemic.

She reminds us that there are health risks with being inn thin.