Picture a familiar scene: long lines of shoppers waiting to check out at the grocery store, carts filled to the brim with the week’s food. While many of us might wonder what is in each cart, Andrew Warnes implores us to consider the symbolism of the cart itself. In his inventive new book, Warnes examines how the everyday shopping cart is connected to a complex web of of food production and consumption, which spread from the United States throughout the world. Today shopping carts represent choice and individual autonomy for consumers, a recognizable American way of life that became a global phenomenon. This brief and accessible book provides an excellent overview of consumerism and the globalization of American culture that is relevant to numerous fields of study.
Andrew Warnes is a Reader in American Studies at the University of Leeds. He is the author of American Tantalus: Horizons, Happiness, and the Impossible Pursuits of US Literature and Culture and Savage Barbecue: Race, Culture and the Invention of America's First Food, among other books.