Literature Study GuidesFast Food NationEpigraph And Introduction Summary

Fast Food Nation | Study Guide

Eric Schlosser

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Course Hero. "Fast Food Nation Study Guide." Course Hero. 10 Nov. 2017. Web. 21 Sep. 2018. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Fast-Food-Nation/>.

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Course Hero. (2017, November 10). Fast Food Nation Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved September 21, 2018, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Fast-Food-Nation/

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Course Hero. "Fast Food Nation Study Guide." November 10, 2017. Accessed September 21, 2018. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Fast-Food-Nation/.

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Course Hero, "Fast Food Nation Study Guide," November 10, 2017, accessed September 21, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Fast-Food-Nation/.

Fast Food Nation | Epigraph and Introduction | Summary

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Key Takeaways

  • The book's epigraph, "A savage servility slides by on grease," is a quotation from the poem "For the Union Dead" by Robert Lowell. The word "servility" also describes the fast food industry's emphasis on obedience.
  • Scientists at Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station, a central hub of American military security, purchase fast food regularly. The fast food wrappers they leave behind may show future archaeologists "the nature of our civilization."
  • Fast food is both "a commodity" and "a metaphor" in the book. Social, cultural, economic, and technological forces combine to create a nation's diet.
  • The fast food industry encourages a culture of "uniformity," conformity, and standardization in America's service and retail economies.
  • The industry's scientific innovations represent "the best and worst of American capitalism" in its innovation, and in its widening gulf between rich and poor.
  • Fast food industry leaders in the American West believe in a free market and small government, but, despite their political views, they depend on federal subsidies.
  • "Gigantic corporate farms" have replaced independent food growers and farmers.
  • Meatpacking has become a dangerous job done by transient immigrants, and towns have changed as a result.
  • The meat industry has introduced deadly pathogens into the American diet.
  • Fast food corporations work with government allies to oppose worker safety, food safety, and minimum wage laws.
  • Eric Schlosser will use evidence, including statistics and worker narratives, to prove the claims he makes in the Introduction.
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