“Aaron Bobbrow-Strain has accomplished a difficult task: White Bread is imaginative, scholarly, yet totally accessible. Any reader who cherishes bread and all the issues it touches as a powerful social and aspirational metaphor will love this book.”—Peter Reinhart, baker and author of Artisan Breads Everyday
Twenty years ago, a city kid from Chicago accidentally found himself on a banana plantation in Ecuador, head over heels in love with the politics of agriculture and food. Aaron Bobrow Strain’s research, writing, and personal life have been wrapped up in those topics ever since. He has worked on a human-sustainable cattle ranch in southern Arizona, studied the global food system from many angles, had run-ins with the police over his backyard chickens, and—of course—baked a lot of bread.
His first book, Intimate Enemies: Landowners, Power, and Violence in Chiapas, grew out of sixteen months of interviews with powerful coffee planters, pistoleros, and the peasant groups that fought against them in southern Mexico.
Aaron has an MA in Latin American Studies from Stanford University and a PhD in Geography from the University of California, Berkeley. He has received grants and fellowships from the National Science Foundation and Social Science Research Council and won teaching prizes from UC Berkeley and Whitman College. Along with numerous academic journals ranging from World Development to Cultural Geographies, his writing has appeared in The Believer, The Chronicle of Higher Education Review, Salon, Gastronomica, and The Huffington Post.
He is associate professor of Politics at Whitman College, and lives in Walla Walla, Washinton, with his wife and two children.