Who Cut the Cheese?: A Cultural History of the Fart

by Jim Dawson

Did You Know: Dinosaurs who farted prodigiously over millions of years, probably contributed enough “greenhouse gas” to make the earth’s atmosphere habitable for humans; a fart in Jerusalem during Passover nearly two thousand years ago led to the deaths of 10,000 people; thanks to his chronic flatulence, Adolf Hitler became addicted to anti-fart pills whose toxic ingredients may have contributed to his dementia?

Yes, it all sounds like a lot of hot air, but we’re not pulling your leg (or your finger!). In Who Cut the Cheese?, the most comprehensive collection of fartlore ever compiled, author Jim Dawson blows the lid off traditional history to reveal the lingering effects of farting through the ages. In sweeping fashion, Dawson sniffs out the influence of flatulence in religion, science, music, literature, television, radio, and more. With additional chapters about farts on film (called “Gone with the Wind”) and French fartiste Le Petomane (probably the most famous windbag in history), this scatological inquiry is nearly as exhaustive as it is unnerving.