A Portrait of American Farmers


  • Kathlee Freeman University of Missouri–Columbia




Race, Beginning Farmers, Food Sovereignty


First paragraphs:

There is an agricultural renaissance of sorts taking place that can be seen in the rising sales of organic food, the sprouting of urban gardens throughout major cities, and the growing legion of locavores. While this surge of interest in what we eat and where it comes from is good for our health and communities, criticism that alternative food systems are elitist and inaccessible has tinged conversations around the growing good-food movement. Indeed, all too often the story of this movement is told only through white voices.

Natasha Bowens' The Color of Food provides a window through which we can see a fuller picture of agriculture in the United States. The reader accompanies Bowens as she crisscrosses the country, revealing the many farmers and communities of color dedicated to their land, food sovereignty, and way of life. The book is a product of Bowens' travels across 15,000 miles (24,140 km) and 16 states to interview farmers of color and to unpack the often complicated emotions related to land ownership, farming, and the exploitation and oppression that has frequently been linked to agriculture....


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Author Biography

Kathlee Freeman, University of Missouri–Columbia

Master's candidate, Rural Sociology Department, University of Missouri–Columbia; 121 Gentry Hall; Columbia, Missouri 65211 USA; +1-573-882-7451.

Kathlee Freeman is a master's candidate at the University of Missouri–Columbia in rural sociology while also working toward a graduate certificate in geographic information science. Her research focus includes the role of technology use in market access for smallholder farmers in east Africa. She is an advisory board member to the Women, Food and Agriculture Network and a contributing writer to Food Tank: The Food Think Tank (http://foodtank.com).

Cover of "The Color of Food"



How to Cite

Freeman, K. (2015). A Portrait of American Farmers. Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development, 5(4), 195–197. https://doi.org/10.5304/jafscd.2015.054.003