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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Whats on the Menu? While options like CSAs and local artisanal restaurants remain problematic in terms of access and class, one cannot refute that these alternative options now exist, are widespread, and are widely considered to be desirable. They are used in the transportation of both meat and produce.

Margaret rated it really liked it Feb 08, She writes that consumer appetites do not drive the food system 8but they do drive the alternative food system, to some extent.

Guthman gives us the research behind the questions we should be qeighing, but, falling all over ourselves in the rush to consensus, we have overlooked. Guthman’s greatest critique 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.

She argues against the energy model calories in, calories out and for an explanation rooted in obesogens. Obesogens are in the hormones given to cattle. However, for some reason I did not enjoy the framework of obesity which shaped her argument. What is the root cause of the obesity epidemic? Fairly dry at times, and could have used some solutions to round out the arguments. Apr 12, Mya rated it liked it Shelves: Moreover, she lays out the mindset of “healthism” that emerges from a neoliberal ideology of individual achievement through discipline and productivity.

Still, Guthman’s critique of the food system seems much more concise, as she takes a firmer stand against the weigjing framework of our country. This is a step in the right direction, and it came about because people are increasingly choosing to support alternative food production. Coplen is a recent graduate of the Master of Environmental chemicals EDCs from a variety of synthetic chemicals.


As they become more prevalent, the julir who already supported them come to depend upon them more.

Interesting approach to considering the so-called obesity epidemic. She compellingly argues gurhman we are operating as a result of bad personal choices and sustains the pro- with a dangerously oversimplified view of the problem, one blematization of non-normative bodies.

In her next chapter, she goes after what is clearly the sacred cow of Food Justice.

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

The author’s critique of alternative food and food justice movement rhetoric and policy solutions is timely and necessary, as well as backed by copious empirical data. It took me a long while to get through this book, but not because it isn’t excellent, interesting, and thought-provoking.

She also focuses the lens of While such fare may be tastier and grown in more ecologically sustainable ways, this approach can also reinforce class and race inequalities and neglect other possible explanations for the rise in obesity, including environmental toxins. Apr 14, Kelsey added it. May 21, Susie is currently reading it.

Weighing In by Julie Guthman – Paperback – University of California Press

Earlier in the text, she gives an overview of the ways farmland was originally distributed, and how that generations-ago distribution gave power and wealth to some, while excluding non-whites. And everyone stands to lose, Gutman argues, both from our current food system, which is polluting the environ- ment and our bodies in ways we are only beginning to understand, and from our obsession with nulie. By questioning the fuzzy facts on obesity, the impact of environment, and capitalism’s relentless push to consume, Weighing In challenges us to think harder, and better, about what it really takes to be healthy in the modern weighint.

It is the way food is produced that causes the problem. Guthman takes issue with the currently touted remedy to obesity—promoting food that is local, organic, and farm fresh. She shows how the epidemic is in certain ways exaggerated and constructed as to understand the problem in some ways and not others. Further, Guthman demon- Guthman has us question whether this simplistic energy strates how this conceptualization precludes the discovery balance model explains the recent rise in obesity, pointing of the actual causes of obesity.


Guthman will undercut just about every answer you think you have. Arguing that ours is a political economy of githman that promotes consumption while also insisting upon thinness—Guthman offers a complex analysis of our entire economic system. By the end of the book, she seems a bit conflicted about the latter point, as she acknowledges that we have seen a broad cultural shift in terms of alternative food systems.

Guthman quotes Gandhi in the middle of the book: This is the crux of her argument that what we need is not different consumer choices but stronger state regulation of food production. Their proliferation also means that more people hear about alternative food, and learn about the environmental and public health harms that can come from industrial agriculture.

Very interesting, thought-provoking book.

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

Quite frankly, it is the neo-liberal market-based food economy that got us into the obesity epidemic, and market-based solutions are not going to get all o It took me a long while to get through this book, but not because it isn’t excellent, interesting, and thought-provoking. Really good read analyzing the neoliberalism of “health” among other topics.

She also focuses the lens of obesity on the broader food system to understand why we produce cheap, o Weighing In takes on the “obesity epidemic,” challenging many widely held assumptions about its causes and consequences. This is no Michael Pollan book — you will need to work or skim to get through it. 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. On one hand, Guthman applauds the authors of such studies for thinking systemically about the ways race and class map onto obesity.

However, filled with some thought provoking critiques, particularly for alternative food and obesity measurement. Return to Book Page. Trivia About Weighing In: