Resources

Here, I will provide a list of websites, books, and other media that I feel further the discussion of these topics, or are otherwise useful in any way, and a short description of each.

Websites:

Books and Publications:

  • The World According to Monsanto: Pollution, Corruption, and the Control of our Food Supply by Marie-Monique Robin
    • An eye-opening exposé about Monsanto Company, and their involvement in a long list of scandals, cover-ups, and outright corruption. Robin discusses the company’s involvement with PCB’s, Agent Orange, Dioxin, and, most recently, Genetically Engineered corn and soybean, and how these “innovations” have seriously harmed the world.
  • The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals by Michael Pollan
    • One of my favorite books by Michael Pollan. Discusses the history of agriculture, and analyzes the basic problems (including the overuse of corn, unhealthy animal farming, and genetic engineering) with our modern food system, all from the perspective of an omnivore asking the question: “What should we have for dinner”.
  • In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto by Michael Pollan
    • Another excellent book by Michael Pollan. This details the problems with the way nutritional and dietary scientists view our eating habits, and how fad diets take the place of cultural traditions in the United States. Organized in accordance to Pollan’s mantra, “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”
  • What Matters: Economics for a Renewed Commonwealth by Wendell Berry
    • A collection of essays that detail Berry’s take on the food crisis and its links to our modern economic system. Berry, an author, poet, and farmer in Kentucky, writes about these issues in the context of the traditional social values of family, spirituality, and hard work, and also in that of the environment, natural resources and conservation, and biodiversity.
  • Folks, This Ain’t Normal: A Farmer’s Advice for Happier Hens, Healthier People, and a Better World by Joel Salatin
    • An informal discussion of the strange, abnormal qualities of our food system, especially when compared to the way things have been done for most of human history. Salatin, who owns and operates Polyface Farms in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley, discusses these issues from the novel perspective of a (self-described) “Christian-libertarian-environmentalist-capitalist-lunatic-farmer”.
  • Rodale’s Organic Gardening Magazine
    • A magazine started by J. I. Rodale in 1942, and still in publication today, it is an excellent and very popular reference for how-tos in organic agriculture and self-sufficient living. The founder of the magazine did so to promote the then-novel ideas of the back-to-the-land movement, and of the connection between human health and the quality of food eaten.
  • The Town That Food Saved: How One Community Found Vitality in Local Food by Ben Hewitt
    • The true story of the town of Hardwick, Vermont that, despite the economic hurdles that we’ve been facing for a decade, managed to find solace, and even to grow (pun entirely intended) together with their local food economy. Hewitt discusses the many food-related businesses and organizations that have arisen in Hardwick over the past few decades, and how the vitality of a community can be restored through the growing, processing, and eating of good, local food.

Visual Media:

  • Food, Inc., produced and directed by Robert Kenner
    • A must-watch film. Exposes the flawed and unhealthy way we produce and consume food in this country, and the effects that it is having on our population.
  • Question What’s Inside, written and performed by Rob Herring
    • A short “music video” that skillfully describes the main issues behind Genetically Modified foods and the type of eating they lead to.
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