Tag Archive for: meat industry

 

In our past as hunter-gatherers, we were predators. But in an agricultural age, our relationship to the animals we kill for their meat has undergone a slow but radical transformation. In his unflinching study of how this shift plays out in the modern psyche, Rob Percival explores how our capacity to empathise with suffering animals clashes with our willingness to consume their flesh. In doing so he challenges us to confront the uncomfortable truths that lie on our dinner plates and to grapple with the moral implications of our appetites – making this an essential read for anyone struggling with their conscience.

Tender and brutal, seductive and repulsive, Meat Lovers introduces a compelling new mode of hardcore pastoral.

I am trying to go vegetarian but finding myself weak,
week to week browsing the meat aisle at a linger
close enough to chill my arms to gooseflesh. I only buy
stuff so processed it hardly makes sense to call it meat.
Saveloy, nugget, continental frankfurter;
whatever gets extruded pink beyond possible memory
of the preceding body.
— ‘The Flexitarian’

In this dazzling first collection, acclaimed Wellington poet and Canterbury farm-girl Rebecca Hawkes takes a generous bite from the excesses of earthly flesh – first ‘Meat’, then ‘Lovers’.

Meat’ is a coming of age in which pony clubs, orphaned lambs and dairy-shed delirium are infused with playful menace and queer longings. Between bottle-fed care and killing-shed floors, the farm is a heady setting for love and death.

In ‘Lovers’, the poet casts a wry eye over romance, from youthful sapphic infatuation to seething beastliness. Sentimental intensity is anchored by an introspective comic streak, in which ‘the stars are watching us / and boy howdy are they judgemental’.

This collection of queasy hungers offers a feast of explosive mince & cheese pies, accusatory crackling, lab-grown meat and beetroot tempeh burger patties, all washed down with bloody milk or apple-mush moonshine. It teems with sensuous life, from domesticated beasts to the undulating mysteries of eels, as Hawkes explores uneasy relationships with our animals and with each other.

Source: Auckland University Press