American Disgust By Matthew J. Wolf-Meyer

  • Narrated by: Lee Goettl
  • Length: 10 hrs
  • Release date: 05-14-24

American Disgust By Matthew J. Wolf-Meyer AudioBook summary

American Disgust shows how perceptions of disgust and fears of contamination are rooted in the country’s history of colonialism and racism. Drawing on colonial, corporate, and medical archives, Matthew J. Wolf-Meyer argues that microbial medicine is closely entwined with changing cultural experiences of digestion, excrement, and disgust that are inextricably tied to the creation of whiteness.

Ranging from nineteenth-century colonial encounters with Native people to John Harvey Kellogg’s ideas around civilization and bowel movements to mid-twentieth-century diet and parenting advice books, Wolf-Meyer analyzes how embedded racist histories of digestion and disgust permeate contemporary debates around fecal microbial transplants and other bacteriotherapeutic treatments for gastrointestinal disease.

At its core, American Disgust wrestles with how changing cultural notions of digestion-what goes into the body and what comes out of it-create and impose racial categories motivated by feelings of disgust rooted in American settler-colonial racism. It shows how disgust is a changing, yet fundamental, aspect of American subjectivity and that engaging with it-personally, politically, and theoretically-opens up possibilities for conceptualizing health at the individual, societal, and planetary levels.


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