Fast Food Nation


Fast Food Nation book coverThe fast-food industry has had an enormous impact on the way that Americans live and eat. In Fast Food Nation, Eric Schlosser looks at how fast food has influenced all sectors of the American culture, from its economy to its industry to its cultural values. Schlosser talks about topics as diverse as the integration of fast food and urban sprawl, the effects of the fast food industry on teenage labor, the new phenomenon of the rural ghetto, the exploitation of immigrant and migrant labor, the franchise business, and the effects of globalization. He also looks at the science of food additives and how the processing of our food has destroyed natural flavors. The broad scope of this books allows for its integration into a variety of classes across campus.

About the Author

Eric Schlosser, journalist and first-time published author, catapulted into the limelight with his book Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal (Houghton Mifflin, 2001; Perennial, 2002). This book was a finalist in the 2002 Book Sense Non-fiction Book of the Year. 

Investigative reporter, Eric Schlosser, began his inquiry of the fast food industry as a two-part article for the Rolling Stone magazine in 1998. He wrote this book over a three year period during which he researched the fast food market and business practices associated with many well-known chains. Upon further investigation, Schlosser unraveled the amazing success of the fast food industry and ramifications on the economy, our environment, various cultures and our nation's health and well-being. According to Schlosser, every facet of our society has been infiltrated by the fast food industry!

During an interview with The Atlantic Unbound, Schlosser said, "A lot of my writing has tried to give a voice to people outside of the mainstream. I don't expect my sort of journalism to change the world, but if it can add some shred of empathy or understanding or compassion, if it can convey a fraction of what I've seen and learned, it's well worth doing."

Eric Schlosser graduated from Princeton University in 1981 where he studied American History. A few of his summer jobs during his Princeton years included working in the mailroom of New York magazine and as a fact checker for Esquire. After graduation, Schlosser attended Oxford University where he studied late nineteenth century British imperial history.

Eric Schlosser is currently a contributing editor for The Atlantic Monthly for which he has been a correspondent since 1996. He contributes regularly to other magazines such as Rolling Stone and U.S. News and World Report. In September 1994, Schlosser won the National Magazine Award for his article "Reefer Madness" (about the criminalization of marijuana) and "Marijuana and the Law" (Part 2 of the aforementioned article). He was also the recipient of the prestigious Sidney Hillman Foundation Award for reporting.

In May 2003, Eric Schlosser released his second book Reefer Madness: Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor in the American Black Market (Houghton Mifflin). This book focuses on exposing the underbelly of the black market associated with marijuana, pornography and illegal immigrants.

Eric and his wife live in New York City with their two children. He is also employed by Robert DeNiro's Tribeca Productions.