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The Ethics of Eating – Barbara Kingsolver

December 22, 2007

Just finished listening to Krista Tippett’s glorious interview with Barbara Kingsolver on Speaking of Faith. Kingsolver’s book ‘Animal, Vegetable, Miracle – a year of food life‘ was the moral centre of the interview but it ranged far and wide on issues of social justice and food, on saving the planet by eating locally and the ethics of harvesting animals.

As we all get closer to the annual food fest that is Christmas, this was a very useful corrective for me to think about what it costs the planet to bring me satsumas in December.

One thing which struck me was the connection she made between the biblical injunction against coveting51qbnq3itxl_aa240_
your neighbours goods and the importance of eating locally grown produce. Brilliant. I’d never have thought that my desire to eat strawberries in mid-winter, brought to me from Spain, could actually be coveting. The quotation from her book is:

Altered routines were really the heart of what we gained. We’ve learned
that many aisles of our supermarket offered us nothing local so we
didn’t even push our carts down those, frozen foods, canned goods, soft
drinks. Yes, that’s a whole aisle. Just grab the Virginia dairy
products and organic flour and get out was our motto, before you start
coveting thy neighbor’s goods.

Grab the podcast from the site, or read the transcript, but be warned, you’ll likely think differently about the table this Christmas.


From → Reflection

One Comment
  1. Pistol Pete permalink

    Barbara Kingsolver is a wonderful author and it sounds like she is equally a woman of integrity. It’s nice to see someone who makes their living with words can also make a difference in their actions.

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