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Black Food Matters: Racial Justice in the Wake of Food Justice
edited by Hanna Garth and Ashanté M. Reese


For Black Americans, the food system is broken. When it comes to nutrition, Black consumers experience an unjust and inequitable distribution of resources. Black Food Matters examines these issues through in-depth essays that analyze how Blackness is contested through food, differing ideas of what makes our sustenance "healthy," and Black individuals' own beliefs about what their cuisine should be.

Primarily written by nonwhite scholars, and framed through a focus on Black agency instead of deprivation, the essays here showcase Black communities fighting for the survival of their food culture. The book takes readers into the real world of Black sustenance, examining animal husbandry practices in South Carolina, the work done by the Black Panthers to ensure food equality, and Black women who are pioneering urban agriculture. These essays also explore individual and community values, the influence of history, and the ongoing struggle to meet needs and affirm Black life. 

A comprehensive look at Black food culture and the various forms of violence that threaten the future of this cuisine, Black Food Matters centers Blackness in a field that has too often framed Black issues through a white-centric lens, offering new ways to think about access, privilege, equity, and justice.


Hanna Garth is assistant professor of anthropology at University of California, San Diego. She is author of Food in Cuba: The Pursuit of a Decent Meal.

Ashanté M. Reese is assistant professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Systems at University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She is author of Black Food Geographies: Race, Self-Reliance, and Food Access in Washington, D.C.

University of Minnesota Press  /  October 27, 2020

0.9" H x 8.4" L x 5.5" W (0.9 lbs) 256 pages