Monday, April 18, 2011

Consuming Women: Meat Eating and Female Identity

I've been meaning to write this blog entry for a long time and create this short video. Ever since I attended a LGBTQIA Conference at Berkeley the thought of meat eating and women's studies has intrigued my curiosity. What are the intersections of masculinity and meat eating? To be considered a man, do you have to eat meat?

I attended a panel on the intersectionality of meat eating, masculinity, and the ramifications this had on women. Essentially the panel suggested that because meat eating came from such a masculine discourse, the more meat you eat, the more of a man you are. However, with the recent sexualization of food (as you will see in the video before) with female imagery, eating meat ultimately meant consuming women.

Because food is sexualized and presented to men in ways that have big breasted, hyper-sexual women devouring greasy burgers and licking their fingers, women have become synonymous with meat consumption. Ultimately, "eating out" takes on a whole new range of meaning and the ways in which men "eat" food is directly related to the way they eat actual food and the way they sexually "eat" women.

Society needs to reexamine the ways in which we present "meat eating" to younger culture. Instead of recapitulating the idea that to eat meat is to be more manly, we need to explore other options of food consumptions that does not come with women's identities attached to the price tag. Although I do eat meat, vegetarians, vegans, and meat-eaters need to explore the ways in which we present different eating options to larger culture in order to change dominate social discourse that links meat and women together.