Trevor's Reviews > Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal

Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser
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Jul 05, 2016

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bookshelves: 2001
Read in August, 2003

There are some shady rhetorical techniques used in this book. I particularly mean the chapter that begins with the little boy who dies after eating at a fast food restaurant. At the chapter's opening is a picture of the boy. It's sad. Then the chapter tells the story. Schlosser builds up a load of pathos to prove his point that fast food is so awful it kills children. Then, in a cursory statement, Schlosser divulges that the boy had other problems and died of a cause unrelated to the food he ate. What?! The book is loaded with these kinds of flaws. Which is sad because I think the thesis is important. That food is awful. And the situation must change.
I taught a research and writing class with this book, and most of my students were at first appalled by Schlosser's finding. Then, after we analyzed his rhetorical techniques, they were appalled by Schlosser. In the end, no student took Schlosser's thesis seriously. We didn't exactly throw a fast food party, but I think everyone would have eaten the food had we done it.
That does not mean the book has no value. It explains the fascinating history of the fast food industry. That, in itself, got this book three stars on my ratings.
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07/05 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Sharon Actually, Schlosser is very explicit that the boy died from E. coli after eating a tainted hamburger. This is on page 200 of the paperback. Am I missing something?


Alana I recommend also watching the film Food Inc. As it shares with us another story of a child who died from E.coli in hamburger meat, and how his mother is trying to influence change in the inspection process... not getting far of course.

Just in case you were interested in learning more on actual cases of E.coli killing children.


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