Skip to Content

Frances Moore Lappé

« Back to Glossary Index

Early Life and Family:
– Born in 1944 in Pendleton, Oregon
– Grew up in Fort Worth, Texas
– Graduated from Earlham College in 1966
– Married Dr. Marc Lappé in 1967
– Attended University of California at Berkeley for graduate studies
– Has two children, Anthony and Anna Lappé
– Daughter Anna co-founded Small Planet Institute with her
– Received support from her family throughout her career
– Partnered with Richard R. Rowe

Career and Achievements:
– Argues world hunger is due to lack of access, not food scarcity
– Advocates for living democracy as a solution
– Co-founded Institute for Food and Development Policy in 1975
– Co-founded Center for Living Democracy in 1990
– Established Small Planet Institute in 2002
– Honored by James Beard Foundation as Humanitarian of the Year in 2008
– Received 20 honorary doctorates from various institutions
– Awarded the Right Livelihood Award in Sweden in 1987

Teaching Positions:
– Visiting scholar at UC Berkeley in 1984-1985
– Visiting scholar at MIT in 2000-2001
– Taught in India with Dr. Vandana Shiva in 2003
– Taught course on living democracy in England in 2004
– Visiting professor at Suffolk University in 2006 and 2008

Writings and Publications:
– ‘Diet for a Small Planet’ (Ballantine Books, 1971, 1975, 1982, 1991)
– ‘Great Meatless Meals’ (with Ellen Buchman Ewald, Ballantine Books, 1974, 1976, 1981, 1985)
– ‘Food First: Beyond the Myth of Scarcity’ (co-authored by Joseph Collins, collaboration with Cary Fowler, Houghton Mifflin, 1977, Ballantine Books, 1979)
– ‘World Hunger: Twelve Myths’ (with Joseph Collins, Grove Press, 1986, 1998)
– ‘EcoMind: Changing the Way We Think to Create the World We Want’ (Small Planet Media, 2011)
– ‘Daring Democracy: Igniting Power, Meaning, and Connection for the America We Want’ (co-authored by Adam Eichen, Beacon Press, 2017)
– ‘Its Not Too Late: Crisis, Opportunity, and the Power of Hope’ (Small Planet Institute, 2021)
– ‘Crisis of Trust: How Can Democracies Protect Against Dangerous Lies?’ (with Max Boland and Rachel Madison, Small Planet Institute, 2023)

External Links and References:
– Small Planet Fund
– Value the Meal Advisory Board
Frances Moore Lappé, Small Planet Institute
– Right Livelihood Award website
– Interview on Humankind Public Radio
– Recent articles (The New York Times Magazine Interview 2019: Frances Moore Lappé changed how we eat. She wants to do the same for our democracy)

Frances Moore Lappé (born February 10, 1944) is an American researcher and author in the field of food and democracy policy. She is the author of 20 books including the 2.5-million-copy selling 1971 book Diet for a Small Planet, which the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History describes as "one of the most influential political tracts of the times." She has co-founded three organizations that explore the roots of hunger, poverty, and environmental crises, as well as solutions emerging worldwide through what she calls "living democracy". Her latest work is a report entitled Crisis of Trust: How Can Democracies Protect Against Dangerous Lies? with Max Boland and Rachel Madison. Recent books by Lappé include Daring Democracy: Igniting Power, Meaning, and Connection for the America We Want, co-authored with Adam Eichen, and It’s Not Too Late: Crisis, Opportunity, and the Power of Hope. In 1987, she was awarded the Right Livelihood Award for "revealing the political and economic causes of world hunger and how citizens can help to remedy them."

Frances Moore Lappé
Lappé in 2008
Lappé in 2008
BornFrances Moore
(1944-02-10) February 10, 1944 (age 80)
Pendleton, Oregon, U.S.
OccupationWriter, activist, speaker
SubjectSocial change, living democracy
Notable worksDiet for a Small Planet
Notable awardsRight Livelihood Award, Rachel Carson Award, Women's National Book Association, James Beard Humanitarian of the Year, twenty honorary doctorates
PartnerRichard R. Rowe
« Back to Glossary Index