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The Red Pill Summer Reading & Watching List


Red Pill Papa and I are getting ready to hang the “Gone Fishin’” sign, as school ends, our extensive summer travel begins (including an in-person Red Pill Confab in New York!) and based on the last three weeks, our realization that keeping our regular posting schedule over the summer is not — ahem — realistic.

We are not, however, leaving you completely in the lurch, as this break gives you the opportunity to grab a few books and DVDs from the Red Pill Canon and dig deeper into some of the topics we’ve covered.  Not that there’s anything wrong with trashy romance novels, chick lit and the Twilight series (sorry, I don’t know what guys read over the summer), but if you’re starting to wake up to reality as we have, you will love these books and DVDs.

That being said, here’s our top five:

Books:

1.  Consuming Kids: Protecting Our Children from the Onslaught of Marketing & Advertising

It’s the head-shaking audacity of marketers, fully revealed in this book, that got me and Red Pill Papa going in the first place, despite the fact that we seem to be all about food lately.  This book will help you understand how your kids’ behavior can be exactly what marketers want it to be (been nagged for something lately?), how your school is probably drenched in advertising cloaked in the rosy patina of “partners in education,” and why this is not a problem in many other countries, because they won’t allow it to be.  The RPP Bible.

2.  Omnivore’s Dilemma – A Natural History Of Four Meals

In the series of books my Mom sent me that were like the alarm clock of reality going off, this was the eye-opener about food: where it comes from, how it is produced, how it benefits or harms our bodies (and beyond) and the full insanity of the corn madness.  Michael Pollan is a joy to read, and this book will probably prove to be a springboard off into other more in-depth food-related topics.

3.  Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

This is a non-fiction book about food, by an acclaimed writer of fiction: in other words, also a joy to read.  Barbara Kingsolver relates the trials, tribulations and triumphs of one family growing all the food they’ll need in a year.  It’s hilarious and will make you want to turn your kids into little chicken farmers.

4.  The World Without Us

I found this book fascinating not because of how it explains what would happen to the world if we humans suddenly disappeared one day, but because it explains how we got to where we are in the first place: it’s a peek into our infrastructure and the products of our industrial, technological lifestyle that is just plain wild.

5. Packaging Girlhood: Rescuing Our Daughters from Marketers’ Schemes

Packaging Boyhood: Saving Our Sons from Superheroes, Slackers, and Other Media Stereotypes

These take Consuming Kids to a deeper gender level, focusing on the specifics of how our girls and boys are encouraged to feel want, need and self-hatred in order to ensure that they become insatiable consumers, and are also pigeon-holed into specific roles for that same reason (i.e. fashion-obsessed, man-pleasing, accessorizing girlie-girls and slacker/goofball/player manly-boys).

DVDs:

1. Food, Inc.

The Omnivore’s Dilemma and beyond in living, visual color.

2. Tapped – All about the water industry.  The air industry will be next.  Think that’s funny?  We thought “water industry” was funny when Evian first came out.

3.  Super Size Me

It’s hard to find anyone who hasn’t seen this yet, and yes, we’re probably preaching to the choir, but it’s fun to watch (while at the same time disturbing) and great to see that the world can be rocked on a very small budget.

4.  Manufactured Landscapes (US Edition)

Mind-blowing cinematography and almost no dialogue characterize this riveting film as major eye candy, that might sometimes get caught in your throat.  A literal look at the world our children are growing up in.

5.  Crude

Petroleum is dripping from almost everything we do, wear, drive and eat.  We are seeing a very large, negative side effect of that dependence in the Gulfs (Persian and ‘of Mexico’); this film shows us how it effects humans on a very small, yet significant level.

Not exactly feel-good movies of the year, but that’s the blue pill, isn’t it?

Enjoy!  We’ll be back with a vengeance later in the summer, and in the meantime you may even find a few one-off posts if the mood strikes and the time is available.  So make sure to sign up for our mailing list in the upper right corner — this way new Red Pill posts will come straight to your inbox.

Remember to apply the sunscreen liberally — and we hope you’ll be sharing some great experiences with your kids before school starts again.

– Red Pill Mama

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