Feminist Food Journal
Feminist Food Stories
On the "Unbearable Whiteness" of Milk

On the "Unbearable Whiteness" of Milk

Exploring its gendered and racialized dimensions

Milk is a highly contested beverage, but not always for the reasons you might think. In this episode of Feminist Food Stories (and as part of our MILK issue), editor Isabela looks at how milk is used as a tool of racial and gender oppression by both extremist alt-right forces and discreet government policies. For part of this story, she sits down with Alice Yao, an associate professor with the Department of Anthropology at the University of Chicago, to discuss Yao’s work on the links between milk consumption and Western imperialism.

This podcast features writing and research by Isabela Vera; sound editing by Isabela Bonnevera & Zoë Johnson, and original music by the Electric Muffin Research Kitchen. You can also listen to it on Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.



Read the transcript of the show here.

Further readings

Freeman, A. (2013). The Unbearable Whiteness of Milk: Food Oppression and the USDA. UC Irvine Law Review, Vol. 3, p. 1251, 2013. <https://ssrn.com/abstract=2338749>

Stănescu, V. (2018). ‘White Power Milk’: Milk, Dietary Racism, and the ‘Alt-Right’, Animal Studies Journal, 7(2), 103-128. <https://ro.uow.edu.au/asj/vol7/iss2/7>

The Economist. (2015, March 28). No use crying: The ability to digest milk may explain how Europe got rich. <https://www.economist.com/finance-and-economics/2015/03/28/no-use-crying>

Feminist Food Journal
Feminist Food Stories
Audio stories from Feminist Food Journal, an online magazine dedicated to a feminist food future.