Pornography of Meat

Overview

How does someone become a piece of meat?

Carol J. Adams answers this question in this provocative book by finding hidden meanings in the culture around us. From advertisements to T-shirts, from billboards to menus, from matchbook covers to comics, images of women and animals are merged - with devastating consequences.

Like her groundbreaking The Sexual Politics of Meat, which has been published in two ...

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Overview

How does someone become a piece of meat?

Carol J. Adams answers this question in this provocative book by finding hidden meanings in the culture around us. From advertisements to T-shirts, from billboards to menus, from matchbook covers to comics, images of women and animals are merged - with devastating consequences.

Like her groundbreaking The Sexual Politics of Meat, which has been published in two editions, The Pornography of Meat uncovers startling connections:

Why pornography demonstrates such a fascination with slaughtering and hunting

Fixations on women's body parts expressed through ads for the breasts, legs, and thighs of chickens and turkeys

Animals to be eaten as meat presented in seductive poses and sexy clothing

Back-entry poses in pornography, implying that women - especially women of color - are like animals: insatiable

How meat advertising draws on X-rated images

Why at least one prominent animal-rights group is actually "in bed" with pornographers.

With 200 illustrations, this courageous and explosive book establishes why Adams's slide show, upon which The Pornography of Meat is based, is so popular on campuses across North America and is reviled by the groups she takes on with insight and passion. From the rise of chain steakhouses to the language of the hunt, from the halls of government to the practice of artificial insemination on farm animals, The Pornography of Meat shows exactly how harm to others parades as fun.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The author of The Sexual Politics of Meat returns with an emotionally charged volume based on her traveling lecture-slide show. Adams, a crusader for the rights of women and animals (or, as she calls them, "nonhumans") charges that both have long been portrayed as consumable, mouth-watering slabs of meat, and she provides graphic backup for her argument in the form of advertisements, signs, photographs and illustrations (e.g., "Strip Tease," reads a billboard for a steak house). The advertising industry is the primary culprit in the "thingification" of women and nonhumans, she says, an argument whose first part will come as no surprise to anyone familiar with Jean Kilbourne's pioneering critiques of the industry's portrayal of women. That advertisers often exploit women's bodies to sell products and that most factory farms treat animals abominably are incontrovertible facts. But Adams's use of familiar hierarchical oppositions (woman is "not man" and animals are "not human," with the "not" always being subordinate) to argue against such industries sometimes undermines her points, by reinforcing, rather than subverting, such binary constructs. Advertising is patriarchy's "self-promotion," she says, and we must "Stop consuming nonhumans. Stop consuming women and children." Adams is an admirable zealot, and it's too bad that this book doesn't include any kind of post-feminist sensibility to add depth and nuance, because it can wind up sounding shrill, strident and outdated. While Adams's chick/chick parallels, among other arguments, are certainly provocative, some readers may struggle with her assertion that "the line between the pornographer's works and the actuality of female [meat] animals' lives may be nonexistent." The 200 black-and-white illustrations are startling, and perhaps the book's best feature-they document broad spectrums of culture and speak to powerful trends of exploitation. Adams's arguments captivate, but when her prose sometimes jumps erratically from one critique to another, the book can feels too much like the slide show narrative that inspired it, or a free-association protest. (June) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Is meat consumption linked to physical and sexual violence? Feminist, vegetarian, and activist Adams (The Sexual Politics of Meat) thinks so, and in 16 provocative essays she tells us why. These essays explore such diverse topics as the objectification of animals and women, the power of exploitative language to devalue, female bodies and body parts as advertisements for meat products, and the sexist aspects of lynching. In the especially controversial "Male Chauvinist Pig?" Adams deplores PETA's (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) use of nude photographs and posters and argues that there is no need to exploit women to save animals. Each essay is supported by documentation, including a dazzling array of visual images that reproduce cartoons, posters, magazine covers, restaurant menus, advertisements, etc. These images, some of which are disturbing and difficult to view, significantly heighten the book's impact and are its best feature. Even readers who do not share Adams's views should find themselves challenged and perhaps even enlightened by this unique work. Highly recommended for academic libraries and for public libraries with collections in vegetarianism.-M.C. Duhig, Lib. Ctr. of Point Park Coll. & Carnegie Lib. of Pittsburgh Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826414489
  • Publisher: Continuum International Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 4/24/2003
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 6.35 (w) x 9.45 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Carol J. Adams is an activist and author of The Pornography of Meat, Living Among Meat Eaters, and many other books challenging a sexist, meat-eating world. She is a sought-after speaker throughout North America and Europe, and has been invited to more than 100 campuses to show "The Sexual Politics of Meat Slide Show," which is always being updated to include contemporary cultural representations.

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Table of Contents

What Pornography?
More than Meat Man to Man Yoked Oppressions Beasts Hamtastic Body-Chopping Armed Hunters Hookers The Fish in Water Problem Anthropornography I Ate a Pig Average White Girl Hoofing It The Female of the Species Male Chauvinist Pig?
Epilogue Acknowledgements Citations Copyright acknowledgements.

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