A Short Guide to Meat with Ruth Ozeki
18 mei 2022
Listen to our podcast A Short Guide to Meat, in which Winternachten programme maker Joëlle Koorneef talks to Ruth Ozeki, the Japanese-American author who has written about meat like no other. My Year of Meats (1998) is a humorous but very critical novel about, among other things, the meat industry. It was a true sensation. In the book, a raw comparison is made between woman and meat, with two plotlines that are slowly woven together. Thinking about the objectification, sexualization, and consumption of both meat and women's bodies comes together in this novel.
Listen to the podcast here or on your favourite podcast platform.
This podcast will help you navigate through the program ‘Meat:Woman’ on the 16th of June 2022 during our literary festival Winternachten 2022. Ruth Ozeki’s novel My Year of Meats was a major inspiration in thinking about connections between meat and women.
In the novel My Year of Meats (1998) by Ruth Ozeki, a filmmaker is commissioned to make a series of commercials to promote American meat on Japanese TV. During her research, she realizes that her own body and fertility are influenced by the meat industry. In this podcast episode, we hear from Ruth Ozeki how she gained inspiration for My Year of Meats as a TV producer and through her work on gory horror film sets. Further, Ozeki reflects on questions such as: What role does activism have in literature? And how does the writer look back on her venture into meat over 20 years later, quite a few steps further into the vegetarian revolution? Ozeki is not attending our festival, but her work was a great inspiration for one of the festival programs this year. Therefore, we are honoured to have this substantive conversation about meat, women, and female flesh.
Ruth Ozeki (USA, 1956) is a highly acclaimed Japanese-American writer, filmmaker and Zen Buddhist. Her novels have been translated into more than 30 languages. A Tale for the Time Being, which makes seemingly impossible connections between writer and reader, past and present, fact and fiction, history, myths and plagues, won the LA Times Book Prize and was nominated for the Man Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. She integrates political, social, scientific, religious, cultural and environmental issues with recognizable human qualities. Ozeki's books often deal with the breach between parent and child, are often full of absurdist humour, and are reflections of the Zeitgeist. In The Book of Form and Emptiness (2021), a teenager hears the voices of objects in the house after his father's death, which worsens as his mother keeps collecting objects. The objects take on a growing role in his life, just as they do in today's consumer society. The Book of Form and Emptiness is shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2022.