Literature on the ethics and politics of food and that on human–animal relationships have infrequently converged. Representing an initial step toward bridging this divide, Messy Eating features interviews with thirteen prominent and emerging scholars about the connections between their academic work and their approach to consuming animals as food. The collection explores how authors working across a range of perspectives—postcolonial, Indigenous, black, queer, trans, feminist, disability, poststructuralist, posthumanist, and multispecies—weave their theoretical and political orientations with daily, intimate, and visceral practices of food consumption, preparation, and ingestion.
Each chapter introduces a scholar for whom the tangled, contradictory character of human–animal relations raises difficult questions about what they eat. Representing a departure from canonical animal rights literature, most authors featured in the collection do not make their food politics or identities explicit in their published work. While some interviewees practice vegetarianism or veganism, and almost all decry the role of industrialized animal agriculture in the environmental crisis, the contributors tend to reject a priori ethical codes and politics grounded in purity, surety, or simplicity. Remarkably free of proscriptions, but attentive to the Eurocentric tendencies of posthumanist animal studies, Messy Eating reveals how dietary habits are unpredictable and dynamic, shaped but not determined by life histories, educational trajectories, disciplinary homes, activist experiences, and intimate relationships.
These accessible and engaging conversations offer rare and often surprising insights into pressing social issues through a focus on the mundane—and messy— interactions that constitute the professional, the political, and the personal.
Contributors: Neel Ahuja, Billy-Ray Belcourt, Matthew Calarco, Lauren Corman, Naisargi Dave, Maneesha Deckha, María Elena García, Sharon Holland, Kelly Struthers Montford, H. Peter Steeves, Kim TallBear, Sunaura Taylor, Harlan Weaver, Kari Weil, Cary Wolfe
Samantha King (Edited By)
Samantha King is Professor of Gender Studies, Cultural Studies, and Kinesiology and Health Studies at Queen’s University. She is the author of Pink Ribbons, Inc.: Breast Cancer and the Politics of Philanthropy.
R. Scott Carey (Edited By)
R. Scott Carey is a grant writer with a PhD in Kinesiology and Health Studies from Queen’s University.
Isabel Macquarrie (Edited By)
Isabel MacQuarrie is a Juris Doctor candidate at Harvard Law School with an MA in sociology from Queen’s University.
Victoria Niva Millious (Edited By)
Victoria N. Millious is a PhD candidate in the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies, Queen’s University.
Elaine M. Power (Edited By)
Elaine M. Power is Associate Professor in the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies at Queen’s University.
An original and important intervention into critical animal and food studies. Messy Eating pushes us past the question 'are we what we eat?' to really inquire into the quotidian and larger political commitments that must be taken into consideration when we think about the complex layering of what we eat, how we eat--the messiness of it all.
Messy Eating is a perfect title for this important collection. It would be an excellent choice for different courses focusing on animal-human relationships and for other people who want to know how different people view the various ways they choose to interact with nonhuman beings and why.
Eating animals will give you insights on how people outside of the agricultural industry view eating meat.