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Enriching tacit food knowledges: towards an embodied food policy

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  • Ge Environmental Sciences
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  • Philosophy
  • Political Science

Abstract

Microsoft Word - Embodied Food Politics ­ Michael Carolan ROE MKG.doc Forthcoming in Journal of Rural Studies. Commentary on Mike Carolan’s Embodied Food Politics (2011) Ashgate, Surrey. Enriching tacit food knowledges: towards an embodied food policy Emma J. Roe, Geography and Environment, Faculty of Human and Social Sciences. University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ [email protected] DO NOT CITE WITHOUT PERMISSION. In my home city of Bristol, UK, there is an exciting initiative called the Bristol Food Policy Council (BFPC) that started in 2011. BFPC activity has involved the publication of a fascinating report titled ‘Who feeds Bristol?’ (Carey, 2011), requests for members of the Bristol community to sign-up to support the ‘Good Food’ charter (bristolgoodfood.org 2012) and championing local food initiatives. Mike Carolan no doubt would applaud these initiatives but I think these are not what would form an embodied food policy based on his embodied food politics. In his book Embodied Food Politics Carolan gives many examples of how community engagements can foster how people can come to know food differently, rather than know more or less about food (the intent perhaps behind Who Feeds Bristol?); the personal example he offers is how he came to develop a taste for fresh mushrooms rather than canned. Understanding how changes to personal food preferences and practices happen—or take-place—are central to the argument that runs through this interesting and engaging book that draws upon post-structuralist and phenomenological theories associated with non-representational ‘theory’ in geography (e.g. Thrift, 2008; Anderson and Harrison, 2010). Carolan’s argument about contemporary food politics and practices unusually argues not that people need more knowledge in the form of information but rather knowledge formed through different experiences. Carolan’s embodied food politics is written from a North American perspective.

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