The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals by Michael Pollan

The Omnivore's Dilemma Reading about food is merging two of my loves together. This is the second food book I’ve read this year so far which is a lot considering I’ve only read ten books this year. George Bernard Shaw is quoted as saying that, “There is no sincerer love than the love of food.” I bake, cook when I can, and am a very adventurous eater. My love for food is great indeed, and it interests me greatly in many respects. This book was long, but very readable. It was informative, but with a genial style that most people can enter into. As a journalist, Pollan can engage readers while some academics would bore with their style about corn sex. Corn features heavily in the first section of the book. It’s fascinating to read the industry of food, and the impact of it on the environment, and the meaning of such words such as “organic” and “sustainable”. Much as Fast Food Nation did when I read it five years ago, this book made me question my eating habits, not only in a basic moral or scientific ways, but on a philosophical level. I enjoyed reading the author going back to the source of food through corn, grass, or in the woods when hunting a wild boar or foraging fungi. I think there is a viable narrative in this book that you may not get from most nonfiction books because I found myself wondering if I could hunt, really try vegetarianism, or trust corn or the word “organic” the same way ever again. My philosophy and views of food are quite in accordance to Pollan’s so it’s a bit preaching to the choir, but I loved the information I got from it and the personal account of his experiences.

ETA: Dewey has interviewed about this book on her site over here.

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