The History and Social Influence of the Potato
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The History and Social Influence of the Potato

4.18 (37 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

First published in 1949, this remarkable book is the culmination of a life-long study of every aspect of the potato. Dr Salaman is concerned first with the history of the potato as a member of the botanical genus Solanum, its adaptation by man as a cultivated plant, and the record of its spread throughout the world; secondly he considers the influence the potato has exerted upon the social structure and economy of different peoples at different times. The archaeological and anthropological evidence for the early significance of the potato among the peoples of Latin America is discussed in detail with numerous illustrations, but the central portion of the book is concerned with the European, and particularly the Irish evidence. Naturally the Great Hunger is the most dramatic single episode in the entire work, and Dr Salaman does full justice to his tragic theme, concluding with the observation that in Ireland 'the potato ended in wrecking both exploited and exploiter'. Elegantly written, with numerous vivid anecdotes, Salaman's History has long enjoyed the status of a classic. This revised impression, with a new introduction and emendations by Professor J. G. Hawkes, enables another generation of readers to sample what Eric Hobsbawm has referred to as 'that magnificent monument of scholarship and humanity'.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 768 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 46mm | 1,170g
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Revised
  • 2nd Revised edition
  • Worked examples or Exercises
  • 0521316235
  • 9780521316231
  • 758,047

Table of contents

Introduction to the revised impression; Preface; Illustrations; 1. Immigrant man and the Andean potato; 2. The archaeological record; 3. The potato in pre-Spanish Peru; 4. The Inca period; 5. The potatoes of America and their relation to the early European varieties; 6. Early descriptions of the potato in Europe; 7. 'Vertues', vices and values; 8. Names and aliases; 9. The introduction to Europe: the Raleigh and other legends; 10. Potato varieties: past, present and future; 11. The potato in Ireland in the sixteenth century; 12. The potato in Ireland in the seventeenth century; 13. The potato in Ireland in the eighteenth century; 14. The period of Irish self-government; 15. Ireland in the nineteenth century; 16. The potato famine: its causes and consequences; 17. The potato in post-famine Ireland; 18. The potato's part in the tragedy of Ireland; 19. The potato in Scotland; 20. The potato in the highlands of Scotland; 21 The potato in the lowlands of Scotland; 22. The potato in Wales; 23. The potato of Shakespeare and the Jacobeans; 24. The seventeenth century: the first hundred years of the potato's progress in Great Britain; 25. The eighteenth century; 26. The nineteenth century and after; 27. The relation between potato and bread consumption; 28. The potato in Tristan de Cunha; 29. The potato in St Helena; 30. The potato in Jersey; 31. The industrial uses of the potato; 32. The potato in war-time; 33. The implements of production; 34. The potato in the realm of art; Epilogue; Appendix; Bibliography; Index; Note.
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Review quote

'It is a work of profound and accurate scholarship, the product, over long years, of patient and careful research. Side by side with the history of the potato, its adoption by man and its spread throughout the world, is a study of the influence which it has exerted on the social structure of those people who accepted it as a staple article of diet.' Nature 'It is a great work, in many respects a noble work, that will excite attention and arouse interest in many quarters.' The Spectator 'His profound learning and the felicity of phrase with which he is able to express it from a combination which carries the reader avidly from page to page ... Dr Salaman has written a truly monumental work.' Horticultural Abstracts 'This book stands as the high achievement of an erudite and humane person of wide knowledge and even wider understanding.' Heredity
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Rating details

37 ratings
4.18 out of 5 stars
5 57% (21)
4 19% (7)
3 16% (6)
2 3% (1)
1 5% (2)
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