The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals

by Michael Pollan
Start Free Trial

What is the major principle of The Omnivore's Dilemma

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Our food is important, not only to our own physiological health, but also to the economic and social health of our communities and to the ecological health of the planet we inhabit; this is the most central principle of the book.

Pollan makes numerous arguments in favor of smaller, more...

Unlock
This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial

Our food is important, not only to our own physiological health, but also to the economic and social health of our communities and to the ecological health of the planet we inhabit; this is the most central principle of the book.

Pollan makes numerous arguments in favor of smaller, more localized farms over the large, mechanized agricultural operations that have become more commonplace in modern industrial society. He argues in favor of small-scale farming on moral grounds, environmental grounds, economic grounds, and the basis of our personal nutritional health.

So, his major principle, therefore, is the importance of food in our lives and the necessity of knowing why we make the dietary choices that we do, as well as the potential impacts that they might have on the world.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The major principle of this book is that what we eat matters to us and our health, to our environment, and to our communities.  Because it matters, we should be more aware of what we eat and should consider its impact.

Specifically, Pollan argues that we should be eating more locally produced food that comes from small farms.  He believes that we should be eating from the "pastoral" food chain.  The farms that make up this food chain use environmentally sensitive practices.  They help our local economies.  They also produce better quality food and do so in a more humane way.

The basic principle that underlies the book, then, is that what we eat matters very much and that we should, therefore, pay more attention to what we eat and where it comes from.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team