September 7, 2009

Michael Pollan & Ben Wyskida say: Read this issue of The Nation.

Once in awhile a special issue of a special magazine hits America right square between the eyes and we all sit up in our bathtubs with the knowledge that journalism, that the fourth estate, is something special, and that America is something we love and care about and that a few people out there, writers and farmers and community activists and moms and entrepreneurs are doing something special, and timeless, and worth supporting and knowing about. The current issue of The Nation is one such. ~ WL

Michael Pollan:

Check out this special issue on food from The Nation, just posted — it’s full of great stuff. I’ve got a short appreciation of Wendell Berry in it, but that’s the least of it. Have a great holiday weekend ~ Michael

Ben Wyskida, our brau over at Pinko:

So much coverage of food politics veers towards elitism, or at least luxury. Mine certainly does – I’ve been blogging lately about my Whole Foods boycott, and before that I think I wrote something about organic cheese.

But there is, of course, a much broader movement towards “food democracy”—the effort to ensure healthy food for everyone, and to change our global food systems so that we all have more control over what we grow, buy and eat. In short: it’s bigger than my hot bar organic Indian lunch, and that’s easy to forget.

I’m proud, then, to be flacking (okay, it’s my day job) The Nation’s special issue that’s out this week – “Food for All”.
It’s our second “food” issue in three years. This one looks closely at what kinds of changes are needed to “democratize” food; at some of the current battle lines in food activism; and at ways everyone can get involved. There are two top tens (break up The Nation!) one about ten ways to support community gardening, the other about ten great ways to improve our food system. Also?
– There is a forum with luminaries like Alice Waters and Blue Hill’s Dan Barber;
– a great slideshow about a sustainable farming revival in one of America’s poorest counties;
– pieces from Michael Pollan and Anna Lappe (on dining hall campus activism!);
– a survey of key food safety legislation moving forward;
– and, since it’s The Nation and we like to stir up trouble, a look at the work of the Gates Foundation fighting hunger in Africa, and if their approach is the right way forward.
I’ll just link to the main page for the whole issue– if you are into food and food politics, there should be something for you. It’s an effort at surveying the “food activism” landscape in a more comprehensive way; you tell me how we’ve done in the comments.
Ben Wyskida is Editor and Co-Founder of Pinkomag.com, a contributor to Huffington Post and Publicity Director of The Nation. And he’s a huge, huge fan of elephantjournal.com, which he feels does for spirituality and green what Pinko does for hedonism and activism.
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