Nobel Conference 46

"Making food good" in all the ways this year's Nobel Conference 46 engages has been Frances Moore Lappé's life work. Her first book, Diet for a Small Planet (1971, 1975, 1982, 1991) is one of the earliest articulations of the relationship of food production and consumption practices to genuine democracy—and the limitations of same. Learning how to make food good is a way to help us see our place in the world more accurately, to help us relate to the world as "world citizens with a sense of responsibility for how our actions and our government's policies affect all the world's peoples."

In the late 1960s Lappé began her lifelong work of trying to ensure healthy, dignified lives for all people through educating about the choices we make in regard to food, from farming practices to practical nutrition and delicious cuisine. Her activism for 40 years has combined a multifaceted and nuanced "vision for social and environmental transformation" with realistic, proven, achievable practices in food production and delivery systems. From founding (with Joe Collins) the Food First Institute in 1975, to founding the Small Planet Institute in 2001, to all the books and articles published during the past forty years, Frances Moore Lappé has worked to "reframe limiting ideas—of scarcity, power, and democracy—to free citizens to create living democracies, turning our planet toward life."

For the practical, practiced hope she has brought to so many individuals and groups, Lappé has received several awards, including the James Beard Foundation Humanitarian of the Year Award in 2008; in 2009 the International Political Economy Section of the International Studies Association named Lappé its Outstanding Public Scholar, and in 1987 she became the fourth American to receive the "alternative Nobel Prize"—the Right Livelihood Award.

Join with us on October 5 & 6, 2010, at Nobel Conference 46 to learn from Frances Moore Lappé how to create living democracies.

Deborah Downs-Miers

Gustavus Adolphus College