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Food : A Culinary History - Jean-Louis Flandrin


A Culinary History

By: Jean-Louis Flandrin (Editor), Massimo Montanari (Editor), Albert Sonnenfeld (Translator)

Hardcover Published: 2nd November 1999
ISBN: 9780231111546
Number Of Pages: 624
For Ages: 22+ years old

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When did the custom of meals served at regular hours begin? At what time did humankind rise to the table and commence eating with individual plates and utensils? Since when have we begun to speak of "cuisine" and to judge our foods, their methods of preparation, and manner of consumption on social criteria of gastronomic merit? In this rich, illuminating book an array of authorities explore the history of food from prehistoric times to the present day.

In the process, they dispel many of the myths about our culinary heritage that food lovers have come to take for granted:

Those who believe pasta originated in China and was brought to Venice by Marco Polo will find another story here.

The notion that flaky pastry dough was invented by Claude Lorrain is shown to be a spurious auxiliary to the renowned seventeenth-century painter's resume.

The illusion that "pA tA(c) de foie gras" was invented in Strasbourg, France in 1788 is shattered by evidence of its existence much earlier in the eighteenth century.

The original recipe for chocolate -- served as a beverage -- contained chili instead of sugar, and the eventual addition of sugar by the Spanish made both sugar and chocolate hot items throughout Europe.

In the course of this major intellectual endeavor the writers explore dietary rules of ancient Hebrews and the contributions of Arabic cookery to European cuisine, detail the table etiquette of the Middle Ages and the beverages of colonial America. They reflect on the McDonaldization of culture and on the burgeoning popularity of foreign foods in our times.

"Food: A Culinary History" is a testament to the diversity of human cultures across the centuries. Exploring culinary evolution and eating habits in a cornucopia of cultures from ancient Mesopotamia to modern America, from the Byzantine Empire to Jewish Mediterranean culture in the Middle Ages, the book is a rich banquet for readers. Culinary customs, the writers reveal, offer great insight into societies past and present -- from agriculture to social life, from religious beliefs to our most unreflected habits. Consider the development of the use of individual place settings in the Middle Ages -- as one writer here contends, the Black Plague may have been responsible in large measure for the decline of communal dining and the increase of space between diners.

Introducing the history of food into the realm of popular discussion, "Food: A Culinary History" is an extraordinary reading experience, a delicious intellectual feast for food lovers around the world.

Industry Reviews

From the Bible and ancient Egypt to the 'banquets'of the Middle Ages and the 'McDonaldization'of Europe, Food: A Culinary History covers the immense history of the table throughout the world. Well researched and scholarly, it is essential reading for the historian and the lover of social studies as well as the modern cook and gourmet. -- Jacques Pepin Vastly informative... Jean-Louis Flandrin and Massimo Montanari have done a marvelous job of making all these aspects of food history make sense from prehistory to the present. -- Eugen Weber Times Literary Supplement Although written in a sophisticated manner, this is a thorough, up-to-date overview of a universally appealing topic. School Library Journal Now that gastronomy and the culinary arts in general are finally being accepted as legitimate academic subjects, it is time we had available to us a copious and worthy sourcebook. The Flandrin and Montanari Food: A Culinary History is exactly what we have needed. Literally overflowing with facts, anecdotes, and histories, it is a major compendium for those in the profession as well as a delightful store of knowledge for anyone who loves to read. -- Julia Child A massive but tasty compendium called Food: A Culinary History demonstrates that the art of dining has gone through some astonishing changes through the centuries. -- Herbert Kupferberg Parade Magazine Food: A Culinary History is essential reading for students of the rich and influential culinary tradition rooted in the Mediterranean. It is provocative in providing a framework for a more general history of European foodways. Journal of Social History The dense, illuminating, sometimes delightful, occasionally maddening collection of essays and papers introduced and edited by Flandrin and Montanari... aspires to be nothing short of a complete history of man's experience and conduct at the table... A cornucopia of captivating, subtle, myth de-bunking information, research and insight. -- Michael Frank LOS ANGELES TIMES BOOK REVIEW Food: A Culinary History stands as a remarkable achievement. -- Priscilla Ferguson Journal of Modern History

Prefacep. xv
Introduction to the Original Editionp. 1
Prehistory and Early Civilizations
Introduction: The Humanization of Eating Behaviorsp. 13
Feeding Strategies in Prehistoric Timesp. 21
The Social Function of Banquets in the Earliest Civilizationsp. 32
Food Culture in Ancient Egyptp. 38
Biblical Reasons: The Dietary Rules of the Ancient Hebrewsp. 46
The Phoenicians and the Carthaginians: The Early Mediterranean Dietp. 55
The Classical World
Introduction: Food Systems and Models of Civilizationp. 69
Urban and Rural Diets in Greecep. 79
Greek Meals: A Civic Ritualp. 90
The Culture of the Symposiump. 96
The Diet of the Etruscansp. 106
The Grammar of Roman Diningp. 113
The Broad Bean and the Moray: Social Hierarchies and Food in Romep. 128
Diet and Medicine in the Ancient Worldp. 141
The Food of Othersp. 153
From the Late Classical Period to the Early Middle Ages (5th-I0th Centuries)
Introduction: Romans, Barbarians, Christians: The Dawn of European Food Culturep. 165
Production Structures and Food Systems in the Early Middle Agesp. 168
Peasants, Warriors, Priests: Images of Society and Styles of Dietp. 178
Westerners and Others
Introduction: Food Models and Cultural Identityp. 189
Christians of the East: Rules and Realities of the Byzantine Dietp. 194
Arab Cuisine and Its Contribution to European Culturep. 207
Mediterranean Jewish Diet and Traditions in the Middle Agesp. 224
The Late Middle Ages (11th-14th Centuries)
Introduction: Toward a New Dietary Balancep. 247
Society, Food, and Feudalismp. 251
Self-Sufficiency and the Market: Rural and Urban Diet in the Middle Agesp. 268
Food Tradesp. 275
The Origins of Public Hostelries in Europep. 287
Medieval Cookingp. 295
Food and Social Classes in Late Medieval and Renaissance Italyp. 302
Seasoning, Cooking, and Dietetics in the Late Middle Agesp. 313
"Mind Your Manners": Etiquette at the Tablep. 328
From Hearth to Table: Late Medieval Cooking Equipmentp. 339
The Europe of Nation-States (15th-18th Centuries)
Introduction: The Early Modern Periodp. 249
Growing Without Knowing Why: Production, Demographics, and Dietp. 374
Colonial Beverages and the Consumption of Sugarp. 383
Printing the Kitchen: French Cookbooks, 1480-1800p. 394
Dietary Choices and Culinary Technique, 1500-1800p. 403
From Dietetics to Gastronomy: The Liberation of the Gourmetp. 418
The Contemporary Period (19th and 20th Centuries)
Introduction: From Industrial Revolution to Industrial Foodp. 435
The Transformation of the European Dietp. 442
The Invasion of Foreign Foodsp. 457
The Rise of the Restaurantp. 471
The Food Industry and New Preservation Techniquesp. 481
The Taste for Canned and Preserved Foodp. 492
The Emergence of Regional Cuisinesp. 500
The Perils of Abundance: Food, Health, and Morality in American Historyp. 516
The "McDonaldization" of Culturep. 530
Conclusion: Today and Tomorrowp. 548
Indexp. 555
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780231111546
ISBN-10: 0231111541
Series: European Perspectives: A Social Thought and Cultural Criticism
Audience: Professional
For Ages: 22+ years old
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 624
Published: 2nd November 1999
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 25.4 x 18.8  x 4.32
Weight (kg): 1.32