Saturday, April 19, 2008

If man is what he eats, then...

Ludwig Feuerbach, who was famous for the phrase, "Der mensch ist was er isst" ("Man is what he eats"), attributed the failure of the worker's revolution of 1848 in Europe to their dietary dependences on potatoes. "Shall we therefore despair," he asks, in one of his more materialist moods:
Is there no other foodstuff that can replace potatoes among the poorer classes and at the same time nurture them to manly vigour and disposition? Yes, there is such a foodstuff, a foodstuff that is the pledge of a better future, which contains the sees of a more thorough even if more gradual revolution. It is--beans!
--From Hegel to Marx: Studies in the Intellectual Development of Karl Marx, Sydney Hook, 1938, p. 260.

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