The Garden of Eating: Food, Sex, and the Hunger for Meaning


"Imagine Adam and Eve today. Where they once had to wrestle with biting into one perfect apple, they would now want to know if it was a Macintosh or a Rome Beauty, organic or tainted by pesticides, picked by union labor or migrant workers. All this before getting around to the issue of original sin. As Jeremy Iggers notes in this wise and witty book, the staggering selections in our supermarkets and the prodigious bounty of the American table should make us as happy as kings. But the truth is that while the American food experience is richer than ever before, it has never been more troubled. Over the last three decades - ever since Julia Child appeared on the scene - Americans have experienced a distinct loss of innocence about food and eating. Our contemporary relationship to food is laden with guilt, fear, and psychopathology. Eating, which is something we used to do simply to survive, has become increasingly eroticized, politicized, fetishized, and heavily burdened with moral significance. We worry incessantly about weight and cholesterol as well as environmental exploitation, carcinogens, food contamination, eating disorders, and much more. We have boxes of chocolates at our disposal, but we are never satisfied. And yet our obsession with food provides a window into the American psyche. In this lively work of social history, Iggers explains with enormous charm and insight why the new food guilt is not as American as apple pie and what we can - and must - do to satisfy our hunger." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • New York
Publication year:
  • 1996


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