'It smells disgusting': Plating up kangaroo for a changing climate



Publication Details

Waitt, G. R. & Appleby, B. (2014). 'It smells disgusting': Plating up kangaroo for a changing climate. Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies, 28 (1), 88-100.


This paper employs a visceral approach to explore the affective relations between kangaroo meat and home. We concentrate on eating kangaroo as a central political issue. In 2008, kangaroo meat gained prominence in Australia through the proposal in the Garnaut Climate Change Review to reduce carbon emissions by changing consumers' red meat diets in an expanded kangaroo meat market. This paper considers why many Australian households choose to avoid eating kangaroo despite market relations and climate policy constituting roo-consumers as environmental citizens. We draw on taste-driven fieldwork that involved participants plating up kangaroo meat at home. We focus on two participants who never eat kangaroo at home to illustrate how this visceral approach is useful to rethinking climate change policies. We discuss how the intensity of visceral disgust works against incorporating more kangaroo meat into weekly home diets to help mitigate climate change. Eating kangaroo created a domestic space where these participants felt viscerally disconnected with culinary legacies along with particular dimensions of their subjectivities and home. Rather than eating kangaroo being tied to the logic of climate change or capitalism, visceral disgust ruptures boundaries that maintain a socio-spatial political order to things through chicken, beef, lamb and pork.

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