Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh
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Junk Food Mums: Class, Gender and the ‘Battle of Rawmarsh’. Jo Pike Food, Health and Education Research Group University of Hull [email protected] Introduction School meals in England Current policy and evidence ‘Battle of Rawmarsh’ Deleuze – affect, concept and opinion.

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Junk Food Mums: Class, Gender and the ‘Battle of Rawmarsh’

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Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Junk Food Mums: Class, Gender and the ‘Battle of Rawmarsh’

Jo Pike

Food, Health and Education Research Group

University of Hull

[email protected]


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Introduction

School meals in England

Current policy and evidence

‘Battle of Rawmarsh’

Deleuze – affect, concept and opinion


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

School Meals in England

School lunches in England

1980’s LEAs not obliged to provide school meals, removal of nutritional standards, CCT, reduced entitlement to FSM

Feb 2005 Jamie’s School Dinners

May 2005 Labour Election - renewed pledge to review nutritional standards, establishment of SFT, increased minimum spend

Phased approach to adoption of nutritional standards - Primary schools: 2008, Secondary: 2009


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Current Policy

  • ‘Choosing Health’ Oct 2004 - identified obesity, diet and nutrition as priorities - revision of nutritional standards for school meals, NSFVS, Healthy schools

  • 2004 PSA target - to halt year on year rise in obesity and overweight among children under 11 - increasing uptake of school meals

  • Healthy weight healthy lives - by 2020 to reduce childhood obesity to 2000 levels


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Evidence

  • Jaime and Lock (2008) suggest some school policies have been effective in improving the food environment and dietary intake in schools, but there is little evaluation of their impact on BMI

  • Wood and Harper (2008) “To date, school based interventions have proved unsuccessful at reducing levels of obesity...the modification of school meals can be successful at making changes at a school level, it has little impact on the dietary habits of individuals”. (SFT)


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Overview part 2

Deleuzian notions of affect

‘Battle of Rawmarsh’

Media representation and affective response


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Deleuze

“Opinion not only assumes a present and shared world; it also assumes a common sense whereby thinking takes the same ‘upright’ form distributed among rational perceivers. Opinion or doxa makes a direct link between affect and concept, between what we see and what we say, or between the sensible and the intelligible.” (p.24 Colebrook, 2002)


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

‘Battle of Rawmarsh’

  • September 2006

  • Rawmarsh Comprehensive School – Rotherham, South Yorkshire

  • Action taken by Mothers following changes to school lunch options and operations.


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

‘Affective responses’


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Affective responses

  • Julie Critchlow, housewife turned antichrist, is standing outside Chubby’s sandwich bar drawing angrily on a cigarette and glaring at the secondary school opposite”

  • To an outsider, Rawmarsh sounds like hell; a place where fat stupid mothers fight for the right to raise fat stupid children” (Hattersley, Times 24th Sept 2006)


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Opinions

Morality “The food that these parents are handing out is not part of a healthy eating diet and on top of that I have to question the morality of delivering it from the grounds of a cemetery.” Weaver, Guardian, 18/09/06

Motherhood“Pictures of the scene-which looked like some grotesque Little Britain sketch-were splashed across the newspapers and Critchlow was called the worst mum in Britain” Hattersley, Times 24/09/06

“If these mums want to effectively shorten the lives of their kids and others’ kids then that is down to them.” The Sun 16/09/09

Intelligence “The row comes as a new survey revealed young people are suffering health problems due to a chronic lack of vitamins in their diet.”


Merton parents

Merton Parents


Ninja mums

Ninja Mums


Junk food mums class gender and the battle of rawmarsh

Conclusions

Location of school meals policy in obesity discourse renders questioning of its aims ‘arguing outside of sense’

Fatness and obesity used to mobilise affective response to those who question aims and implementation of school meals policy

Use of disgust as affective response to mobilise opinions in relation to classed, white femininity


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