By Rich Fisher
Tulsa, Oklahoma – On this edition of StudioTulsa, we speak by phone with the Texas-based historian, scholar, and author James McWilliams, whose newest book is "Just Food: Where Locavores Get It Wrong and How We Can Truly Eat Responsibly." This provocative, ever-so-timely volume has just appeared in paperback from Bay Back Books, and McWilliams will appear at a Book Smart Tulsa reading/signing/gala on Tuesday of next week. (The event is at 7pm on August 10th --- it's a "literary pool party" happening alongside the rooftop pool at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in downtown Tulsa. For more information, go to booksmarttulsa.com.) As a Publishers Weekly has noted of this book: "Eager to dispel the mythology surrounding local and organic foods, historian McWilliams outlines the shortcomings of contemporary ideology regarding 'food miles' and offers a series of prescriptive ideas for a more just, environmentally sustainable food system. The rational and data-driven argument --- presented with chatty asides --- tackles the conventional wisdom about transportation, aquaculture, and genetic engineering. McWilliams urges concerned consumers to move beyond the false dichotomies that have come to characterize the debate --- global vs. local, abundant vs. deficient, organic vs. conventional --- and imagine a middle ground within the existing system, even if it runs the risk of 'selling the sustainable soul.' He presents thought-provoking ideas about food reform, sulfur fertilizers, and eating meat.... McWilliams's perspective acts as a welcome foil to folksy, romanticized notions of the food revolution, using sound rhetoric and research to synthesize an examination fit for anyone who takes seriously the debate over a sustainable food system."