Date of Award
Public Policy Leadership
Catarina Passidomo Townes
Americans eat an average of ninety pounds of chicken in one year, but where does that chicken come from? Immigrants and African Americans are the majority of the labor population in poultry processing plants located in the American South. In an effort to highlight the racism, sexism, insecurity, and environmental degradation in the poultry industry, I analyze a variety of ethnographies, articles, and science journals as well as U.S Supreme Court decisions and policies enacted by the U.S federal government in this thesis. Upon examination, I answer why society is pecking the hands that feed them. The analysis concludes that American consumers are unaware that they are pecking the hands that feed them. The exploitation of labor in agricultural industries has been an open secret for hundreds of years, allowing an exploitative culture to be accepted amongst consumers; therefore, the suffering of the poultry industry is allowed to continue undisturbed.
Kline, Sophie M., "Pecking The Hands That Feed Them: How Society And Government Have Allowed The Poultry Industry To Exploit Labor and The Environment In The American South" (2020). Honors Theses. 1447.
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