By Michel Onfray, Stephen Muecke, Donald Barry
Tracing the suitable for eating obsessions of philosophers from Diogenes to Sartre, Onfray considers how their principles relate to their diets. may Diogenes were an opponent of civilization with out his flavor for uncooked octopus? could Rousseau were this type of proponent of frugality if his day-by-day menu had incorporated anything greater than dairy items? Onfray bargains a superbly Kantian critique of the nostril and palate, due to the fact “the inspiration acquired from them is extra a illustration of pleasure than cognition of the exterior object.” He exposes Nietzsche’s grumpiness—really, Nietzsche grumpy?—about undesirable chefs and the retardation of human evolution, and he explores Sartre’s surrealist repulsion via shellfish simply because they're “food buried in an item, and you have got to pry them out.”
A enjoyable romp in the course of the culinary likes and dislikes of our most famed thinkers, Appetites for concept will intrigue, impress, and entertain, and it may possibly additionally make you reflect on a chew to eat.
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Additional info for Appetites for Thought : Philosophers and Food
Noting the same teeth and intestines in both frugivorous animals and humans, Rousseau concludes that we are related to herbivores – and pacifists to boot. Rousseau’s equation is a simple one: carnivorous warriors versus pacifist vegetarians. 37 But why did the human species become culturally carnivorous, rather than remain naturally vegetarian, if Nature is such a source of perfection? Rousseau maintains an embarrassed silence on this point. One more proof of Man’s natural vegetarianism is that vegetable-eating species give birth less frequently than those that eat meat.
Two examples of celebrated herbivores: the first, Saint-Just, who was also obsessed by the Lacedaemonian connection. In his Fragments Concerning Republican Institutions, where, of course, he has his theory of liberty, a passage is devoted to the feeding of children. 41 The second famous vegetarian is Adolf Hitler. 1 Every evening he played billiards and cards, and every midday he drank a glass of wine – never beer: he was the declared enemy of the Prussian national drink, ‘a slow, but fatal poison’ he saw as one of the major causes of mortality .
37 Reconciled with philosophy, dietetics wins its spurs of nobility – it is understood as an argument for a science of bodily wisdom. Emaciated, ‘dried up like a clay pot’,38 complaining about the sauerkraut being too sweet while lunching on sweetened prunes, eating meat on the turn (because it is more tender), chewing it for a long time to extract the juice, giving up his fork for a small spoon, Kant burdened his correspondence with Kiesewetter about what beetroots to order. As an octogenarian reaping the benefits of a careful diet, Kant finished his life quite gently, comfortably.