Big Chicken Puts US Eating Habits Under Microscope

Photo by Wilfredo R. Rodriguez H., via Wikimedia Commons

Editor's Note:

Plus: Netflix enters the comics biz, and Charles Bukowski speaks from beyond the grave, and more in today’s news roundup. Welcome to your Daily Blunt!

Maryn McKenna doesn’t want the world to stop eating chicken — she just wants to show how our current poultry farming may be connected to the rise in antibiotic-resistant illnesses. Speaking to NPR about her new book Big Chicken, McKenna describes the hazards we’ve created for ourselves, but there’s hope: ever since Perdue stopped using antibiotics in their chickens, many other farmers have followed suit. Not out of altruism, however — according to McKenna, “They did it because they’re concerned about the reaction of their consumers. And Perdue themselves say they were getting about 3,000 comments a month from their customers questioning why routine antibiotics had to be used, in expressing discomfort with that process.”

Advice to all poets who challenge the status quo: don’t die. Just look at what happened to Charles Bukowski, the drunken, rough-edged hero of lit-bros worldwide. Combing through the author’s archives, scholar Abel Debritto discovered that nearly all Bukowski’s posthumous releases have been edited into practically unrecognizable works, including one volume released with “just two lines left unchanged.” Debritto’s new book, Storm for the Living and the Dead: Uncollected and Unpublished Poems, strives to set the record straight, presenting a collection of Bukowski’s poems and notes, warts and all.

An incomplete Navajo dictionary compiled by the US government in 1958 serves as a personal and creative leaping-off point for Danielle Geller, whose finds both strength and weakness in her Navajo identity as she explores these words. “It is one thing to play dress-up, to imitate pronunciations and understanding,” she writes. “It is another thing to think or dream or live in a language not your own.” That experience may still elude her, but Geller’s “annotated” version of the dictionary serves as a potent history and linguistics lesson for the rest of us.

Having already crashed the gates of the film industry, Netflix is now staking a claim at other end of the production line, launching its own comic book studio with Mark Millar and French artist Olivier Coipel, kicking off with a brand new series called The Magic Order. Issues will be published in print and online, and what do you want to bet that a TV adaptation won’t be too far over the horizon?