1. Go Big Read/Humanities Without Boundaries Public Lecture:
In Defense of Food: The Omnivore’s Solution
Thursday, September 24, 7PM, Kohl Center (Click here for Kohl Center information)
Doors open at 6PM
There are no tickets needed for this event, it is FREE and open to the public
Special Events Parking will be available for $5 after 4:30 PM in the following lots: 91, 46, 29, 88. To view a map of these lots please click Here
There will be a section for visitors that need the services of a sign language interpreter, if you need this service please find a volunteer in a green Go Big Read shirt.
Due to the scale of the Kohl Center event, the question and answer period will be moderated. Questions for Michael Pollan should be posted to the BLOG by September 21st.
Real food--the kind of food your great-grandmother would recognize as food—is being undermined by science on one side and the food industry on the other, both of whom want us focus on nutrients, good and bad, rather than actual plants, animals and fungi. The rise of “nutritionism” has vastly complicated the lives of American eaters without doing anything for our health, except possibly to make it worse. Nutritionism arose to deal with a genuine problem--the fact that the modern American diet is responsible for an epidemic of chronic diseases, from obesity and type II diabetes to heart disease and many cancers--but it has obscured the real roots of that problem and stood in the way of a solution. That solution involves putting the focus back on foods and food chains, for it turns out our personal health cannot be divorced from the health of the soil, plants, and animals that make up the food chains in which we take part. In this talk, Pollan explores what the industrialization of food and agriculture has meant for our health and happiness as eaters, and looks at the growing national movement to renovate the food system.
2. In Defense of Food
Friday, September 25, 3:30 PM, Wisconsin Union Theater
This panel, which features Michael Pollan in dialogue with alumni and faculty from a range of fields, will highlight thoughtful critical engagements with In Defense of Food. : A Panel Discussion
Michael Pollan: Bio below
Susan Lampert Smith: Susan is a science writer for UW Health, covering basic research in the School of Medicine and Public Health. For 10 years, she traveled the state of Wisconsin to write the On Wisconsin column for the Wisconsin State Journal. She teaches writing in the Department of Life Sciences Communications and is a 25-year vendor, with her husband Matt, at the Dane County Farmer's Market. They own Blue Valley Gardens, near Blue Mounds.
John Vrieze: John is the third generation owner of Vrieze Farms Inc., which celebrated its 100-year anniversary in 2007. He runs three dairys with some 2,500 cows. A member of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Board of Visitors and the Global Warming Task Force, Vrieze is using a number of technologies on his large-scale dairy operations to generate renewable energy and reuse waste products. Vrieze’s operations may offer the model of where dairy in Wisconsin may be headed.
3. Michael Pollan will also be the keynote speaker at REAP’s Food for Thought Festival on Saturday, September 26, 10AM. Visit reapfoodgroup.org for more information.
Michael Pollan's In Defense of Food has been chosen as the first book in the Go Big Read common book program.
Read the article in the Badger Herald
Michael Pollan's Op-Ed in the New York Times Big Food vs. Big Insurance
Read one of Pollan's recent articles about the future of food in America: New York Times Magazine: The Food Issue: An Open Letter to the Next Farmer in Chief
A contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine since 1987, his writing has received numerous awards, including the James Beard Award for best magazine series in 2003; the John Burroughs prize (for the best natural history essay in 1997); the QPB New Vision Award (for his first book, Second Nature); the 2000 Reuters-I.U.C.N. Global Award for Environmental Journalism for his reporting on genetically modified crops; and the 2003 Humane Society of the United States’ Genesis Award for his writing on animal agriculture. His essays have appeared in many anthologies, including Best American Essays (the 1990 and 2003 editions), Best American Science Writing (2004), and the Norton Book of Nature Writing. In addition to publishing regularly in the New York Times Magazine, his articles have appeared in Harper’s (where he served for many years as executive editor), Mother Jones, Gourmet, Vogue, Travel + Leisure, Gardens Illustrated, and House & Garden.
In 2003, Pollan was appointed the John S. and James L. Knight Professor of Journalism at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, and the director of the Knight Program in Science and Environmental Journalism. In addition to teaching, he lectures widely on food, agriculture, and gardening.
This visit is made possible by The Center for the Humanities in partnership with the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation; the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies; the Center for Culture, History, and Environment (CHE); the Wisconsin Initiative for Science Literacy; the Bradshaw-Knight Foundation; UW-Madison Libraries; the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences; the Distinguished Lecture Series; UW-Madison Athletics; and the Research, Education, Action and Policy on Food Group (REAP).