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The Vegetarian Myth: Food, Justice, and Sustainability Paperback – May 1 2009

4.0 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: PM Press; 1 edition (May 1 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1604860804
  • ISBN-13: 978-1604860801
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 431 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #86,175 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

Review

"Everyone who eats should read this book. Everyone who eats vegetarian should memorize it . . . This is the single most important book I’ve ever read on diet, agriculture, and ecology."  —Aric McBay, author, What We Leave Behind


"This book saved my life . . . [It] offers us a way back into our bodies, and back into the fight to save the planet."  —Derrick Jensen, author, Endgame


"[Vegetarian Myth] is one of the most important books people, masses of them, can read, as we try with all our might, intelligence, skill, hope, dream , and memory, to turn the disastrous course the planet is on."  —Alice Walker, prize-winning author, The Color Purple



"We may not want to face the facts, but Keith sees this as no excuse to stay in denial. If delivered as a speech, you could see that no one in the audience would be [seated] at the end. I have never seen such rousing prose." —www.ZoeHarcombe.com (August 7, 2011)


"In The Vegetarian Myth ex-vegan Lierre Keith argues that saving the planet and ending the suffering found in factory farms can not be achieved by refusing to eat animals, it can only be achieved by boycotting modern agricultural practices, which Keith calls 'the most destructive thing that people have done to the planet.'" —www.mercola.com


"The Vegetarian Myth by Lierre Keith has taken a drubbing by some vegans and vegetarians but I think it is a brilliant book about the reality of eating on this planet . . . . A very worthwhile immersion." —Alice Walker, alicewalkersgarden.com

About the Author

Lierre Keith is a writer, a farmer, and a feminist activist. She is the author of the novels Conditions of War and Skyler Gabriel. She splits her time between Northampton, Massachusetts and Humboldt, California.


Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

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I'm 1/3 of the way through this book and it still hasn't covered what diet a person should be eating. I thought that would be the whole point behind a book like this. It's more on the moral complications of what to eat and the consequences of it. I like how it shows what agriculture is doing to the planet and at the same time what confined animal factory operations are also doing. It's more of a message to the world that we need to stop what we're doing and how things have spun out of control the way it is. It's also a wake-up call to vegans and vegetarians that their diet is lacking in some areas that could result in irreversible damage to their bodies. I think the bottom line is try to eat smart and while the meat in the supermarket may be a bad choice health-wise and world-wise, meat is still essential for good health.
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This book is as the description says, 'part memoir, nutritional primer, and political manifesto.'

Lots of books talk about the harm eating processed foods and high levels of sugars and grains on our health, but this book is one of the few that combines this with information about the effect all these many grain crops have on our environment and on many different ecosystems.

The author talks about all the hidden death that is involved in the production of foods such as grain crops, and why vegan meals may involve far more death than the more obvious death of a single animal to provide a meal for an omnivore. Many animals are made extinct when land is cleared for grain crops and billions of small animals such as mice and rabbits are killed every year by harvesting equipment, for example.

The book explains that buying a soy burger may give you an emotional quick fix but it does nothing at all to deal with any of the bigger issues, is terrible for your health, and gives money to some of the biggest corporations that are causing some of the worst problems in worldwide hunger and so on. To be truly moral in our eating habits involves more than just extending morality to a few animals who are most like us. The rest of the world, all those billions of other lives, count too.

The author also writes about how our soils need to eat and what they need to eat is either fossil fuels or animal products such as manure, and that there is no way around this. That we are part of a circle of life and trying to separate ourselves from this cycle is causing a lot of problems for our environment.
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Format: Paperback
Well written book! I ate a strict vegan diet for 5 years. I did plenty of reading and believed my decisions were leading to a death free diet. Lierre Keith with a few pointed facts and scenarios showed me that I had missed taking certain details of my food production into account. I was still leading to many animal deaths unbeknown to me at the time. This book has plenty food for thought and I felt the book non judgemental or pushy... Good read! And a small shout out to Steven Crowder for the Lierre Kieth interview.
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Though I think the book is mistitled, I will be recommending it to everyone I know. Beautifully researched myth-busting on what humans are at root and how agriculture has ravaged every environment. I loved it.
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This book features an incredible body of research, it is well written and easy to understand. Any negative feedback is due to a lack of understanding or ignorantly hanging on to desired believes. It is a must read for anyone concerned about their health as well as the health of our planet. The author masterfully covered a variety of different subjects and concepts.

This book is thoughtful, thought provoking and well thought off .... in one word exceptional.
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It takes a brave and honest soul to write a book like this, not to mention a sharp and inquisitive mind. Lierre Keith should be applauded for her courage, curiosity and insight. I was blown away by this book; I could not put it down. I have never been a vegetarian, but her story is one everybody needs to hear. Vegetarians and vegans will find her approach very understanding and sympathetic towards those beliefs, even as she explains why they are misleading and destructive.

This book is exhaustive in its research, heart wrenching in its honesty, and mind blowing in its brutal truths. Keith deomolishes the animal-products-are-bad-for-us-and-the-planet diatribe with reason, heart, science, and personal experience. She examines the 3 major philosphies behind veganism (moral, political and nutritional) and shatters them one by one. She then explains her views on what might work to feed the planet and keep us healthy, and it is not by growing monocrops of wheat, corn or soy. My mind and eyes were opened wide by this book. I am amazed at how much I learned from Ms. Keith.

Despite my overwhelming applause, I must admit to having to brush away several spots of male bashing now and then. Keith has very strong feminist views that cloud her otherwise clear voice in a few places. But these spots are very brief and easily skipped over. The information she offers is sound, she has researched her topics thoroughly and her writing style is fluid and captivating.

As I said above, this is my #1 pick for the year, and I read a lot of books on a wide variety of topics. Give this to someone you care about, especially if they are thinking of going vegan or care about the planet and sustainability.
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