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Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Mealby Eric Schlosser
Synopses & Reviews
Are we what we eat?
To a degree both engrossing and alarming, the story of fast food is the story of postwar Amerca. Though created by a handful of mavericks, the fast food industry has triggered the homogenization of our society. Fast food has hastened the malling of our landscape, widened the chasm between rich and poor, fueled an epidemic of obesity, and propelled the juggernaut of American cultural imperialism abroad. That's a lengthy list of charges, but Eric Schlosser makes them stick with an artful mix of first-rate reportage, wry wit, and careful reasoning.
Schlosser's myth-shattering survey stretches from the California subdivisions where the business was born to the industrial corridor along the New Jersey Turnpike where many of fast food's flavors are concocted. He hangs out with the teenagers who make the restaurants run and communes with those unlucky enough to hold America's most dangerous job — meatpacker. He travels to Las Vegas for a giddily surreal franchisers' convention where Mikhail Gorbachev delivers the keynote address. He even ventures to England and Germany to clock the rate at which those countries are becoming fast food nations.
Along the way, Schlosser unearths a trove of fascinating, unsettling truths — from the unholy alliance between fast food and Hollywood to the seismic changes the industry has wrought in food production, popular culture, and even real estate. He also uncovers the fast food chains' efforts to reel in the youngest, most susceptible consumers even while they hone their institutionalized exploitation of teenagers and minorities. Schlosser then turns a critical eye toward the hot topic of globalization — a phenomenon launched by fast food.
FAST FOOD NATION is a groundbreaking work of investigation and cultural history that may change the way America thinks about the way it eats.
The New York Times bestseller that blew the lid off the fast food industry—exposing how they've malled our landscapes, widened the gap between rich and poor, fueled an epidemic of obesity, and propelled American cultural imperialism abroad—now includes a new Afterword from the masterful muckraker (who started it all), Eric Schlosser.
New York Times Bestseller,
With a New Afterword
“Schlosser has a flair for dazzling scene-setting and an arsenal of startling facts . . . Fast Food Nation points the way but, to resurrect an old fast food slogan, the choice is yours.”—Los Angeles Times
In 2001, Fast Food Nation was published to critical acclaim and became an international bestseller. Eric Schlossers exposé revealed how the fast food industry has altered the landscape of America, widened the gap between rich and poor, fueled an epidemic of obesity, and transformed food production throughout the world. The book changed the way millions of people think about what they eat and helped to launch todays food movement.
In a new afterword for this edition, Schlosser discusses the growing interest in local and organic food, the continued exploitation of poor workers by the food industry, and the need to ensure that every American has access to good, healthy, affordable food. Fast Food Nation is as relevant today as it was a decade ago. The book inspires readers to look beneath the surface of our food system, consider its impact on society and, most of all, think for themselves.
“As disturbing as it is irresistible . . . Exhaustively researched, frighteningly convincing . . . channeling the spirits of Upton Sinclair and Rachel Carson.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“Schlosser shows how the fast food industry conquered both appetite and landscape.”—The New Yorker
Eric Schlosser is a contributing editor for the Atlantic and the author of Fast Food Nation, Reefer Madness, and Chew on This (with Charles Wilson).
To a degree both engrossing and alarming, the story of fast food is the story of postwar America. Schlosser, a National Magazine Award-winning journalist, charts the fast food industry's enormous impact on our health, landscape, economy, politics and culture as he transforms the way America thinks about what it eats.
About the Author
Award-winning journalist Eric Schlosser is a correspondent for the Atlantic Monthly. His first book, Fast Food Nation, has been on the New York Times bestseller list for over a year (hardcover and paperback combined) and has appeared on the bestseller lists of the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Boston Globe, the Washington Post, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly, among others. Schlosser has appeared on 60 Minutes, CNN, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, FOX News, The O"Reilly Factor, and Extra!, and has been interviewed on NPR and for Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, and the New York Times. He is currently at work on a book about the American prison system.
Table of Contents
Introduction 1 I. The American Way 1. The Founding Fathers 13 2. Your Trusted Friends 31 3. Behind the Counter 59 4. Success 91
II. Meat and Potatoes 5. Why the Fries Taste Good 111 6. On the Range 133 7. Cogs in the Great Machine 149 8. The Most Dangerous Job 169 9. Whats in the Meat 193 10. Global Realization 225
Epilogue: Have It Your Way 255 Photo Credits 273 Notes 274 Bibliography 330 Acknowledgments 336 Index 339
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