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    An Edible History of Humanity (Hardback) By (author) Tom Standage

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    DescriptionThe bestselling author of "A History of the World in 6 Glasses "brilliantly charts how foods have transformed human culture through the ages. Throughout history, food has acted as a catalyst of social change, political organization, geopolitical competition, industrial development, military conflict, and economic expansion. "An Edible History of Humanity "is a pithy, entertaining account of how a series of changes--caused, enabled, or influenced by food--has helped to shape and transform societies around the world. The first civilizations were built on barley and wheat in the Near East, millet and rice in Asia, corn and potatoes in the Americas. Why farming created a strictly ordered social hierarchy in contrast to the loose egalitarianism of hunter-gatherers is, as Tom Standage reveals, as interesting as the details of the complex cultures that emerged, eventually interconnected by commerce. Trade in exotic spices in particular spawned the age of exploration and the colonization of the New World. Food's influence over the course of history has been just as prevalent in modern times. In the late eighteenth century, Britain's solution to food shortages was to industrialize and import food rather than grow it. Food helped to determine the outcome of wars: Napoleon's rise and fall was intimately connected with his ability to feed his vast armies. In the twentieth century, Communist leaders employed food as an ideological weapon, resulting in the death by starvation of millions in the S oviet Union and China. And today the foods we choose in the supermarket connect us to global debates about trade, development, the environment, and the adoption of new technologies. Encompassing many fields, from genetics and archaeology to anthropology and economics--and invoking food as a special form of technology--"An Edible History of Humanity "is a fully satisfying discourse on the sweep of human history.


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  • Full bibliographic data for An Edible History of Humanity

    Title
    An Edible History of Humanity
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Tom Standage
    Physical properties
    Format: Hardback
    Number of pages: 269
    Width: 165 mm
    Height: 236 mm
    Thickness: 28 mm
    Weight: 499 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9780802715883
    ISBN 10: 0802715885
    Classifications

    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 15500
    B&T Merchandise Category: GEN
    B&T Book Type: NF
    BIC subject category V2: HBG, HBTB
    BIC E4L: HIS
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: T5.0
    B&T Modifier: Region of Publication: 01
    B&T Modifier: Academic Level: 05
    BIC subject category V2: WB
    B&T Modifier: Subject Development: 01
    Libri: I-HP
    BISAC V2.8: HIS037000
    Ingram Subject Code: HP
    B&T General Subject: 431
    BISAC V2.8: CKB041000, SOC055000
    B&T Approval Code: A97400000
    LC subject heading:
    B&T Approval Code: A14530000
    LC subject heading:
    DC21: 394.1209
    DC22: 394.1209
    LC subject heading: , , , ,
    BISAC V2.8: HIS054000
    DC22: 394.1/209
    LC classification: GT2850 .S73 2009
    LC subject heading:
    Illustrations note
    illustrations
    Publisher
    Walker & Company
    Imprint name
    Walker & Company
    Publication date
    19 May 2009
    Publication City/Country
    New York, NY
    Review quote
    "Earliest civilizations appeared on earth when farmers banded together and exploited their excess crops as a means of trade and currency. This allowed some people to abandon agriculture [leading to] organized communities and cities. Standage traces this ever-evolving story through Europe, Asia, and the Americas and casts human progress as an elaboration and refinement of this foundation...Standage also uncovers the aspects of food distribution that underlay such historic events as the Napoleonic Wars and the fall of the Soviet empire.""--Booklist " "[Standage] shows how one of humanity's most vital needs (hunger) didn't simply reflect but served as the driving force behind transformative and key events in history. ... Perhaps the most interesting section is the final one, which looks at the ways in which modern agricultural needs have acted as a spur for technological advancement, with Standage providing a summary of the challenges still faced by the green revolution.""--Library Journal" "This meaty little volume... 'concentrates specifically on the intersections between food history and world history.' But history isn't Standage's only concern. He takes the long view to illuminate and contextualize such contemporary issues as genetically modified foods, the complex relationship between food and poverty, the local food movement, the politicization of food and the environmental outcomes of modern methods of agriculture... Cogent, informative and insightful.""--Kirkus Reviews"