A Bite of the Forbidden Fruit: The Abject of Food and Affirmative Environmental Ethics

Open Philosophy 5 (1):281-295 (2022)
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This article explores the negative framing of environmental concern in the context of food procurement and consumption, through the lens of the myth of Eden considering the ontological and genealogical aspects of the experienced exile from nature. The article first considers the theoretical context of the negative framing of food ethics. Demonstrating the consequences of the experience of food as abject, the article then goes on to discuss the exile from Eden as an explanatory myth for the perceptual inbetweenness of humankind. The aim of the article is to outline the genealogical markers of the negative framing of food ethics via the discussion of the exile from Eden. In the context of a new materialist understanding of the nature–culture continuum, the article depicts the exile as a perceptual rather than ontological divide that does not reflect a factual human inbetweenness but mirrors the objectification of nature by stripping the flesh of its spirit. Such reenvisioning is thought to be a pivotal aspect for mitigating the affectual abjectivity of food and recapturing the factual entanglement of body–environment to enable affirmative environmental ethics.

Author's Profile

Anne Sauka
University of Latvia


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