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Bananas: An American History [Format Kindle]

Virginia Jenkins

Prix conseillé : EUR 16,01 De quoi s'agit-il ?
Prix éditeur - format imprimé : EUR 15,99
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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

“Jenkins’s historical overview of the banana’s production, marketing, and transporting makes this book a strong contribution to the growing field of food studies.”—Publishers Weekly

“In a vivid and often funny history, Jenkins charts how shifting diets and nutritional standards at the turn of the century, as well as more recent changes in food marketing and distribution, propelled the Caribbean fruit to widespread popularity and iconic stature in American culture.”—Discover

Présentation de l'éditeur

Before 1880 most Americans had never seen a banana. By 1910 bananas were so common that streets were littered with their peels. Today Americans eat on average nearly seventy-five per year. More than a staple of the American diet, bananas have gained a secure place in the nation's culture and folklore. They have been recommended as the secret to longevity, the perfect food for infants, and the cure for warts, headaches, and stage fright. Essential to the cereal bowl and the pratfall, they remain a mainstay of jokes, songs, and wordplay even after a century of rapid change.

Covering every aspect of the banana in American culture, from its beginnings as luxury food to its reputation in the 1910s as the “poor man's” fruit to its role today as a healthy, easy-to-carry snack, Bananas provides an insightful look at a fruit with appeal.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 6585 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 210 pages
  • Editeur : Smithsonian Books (14 janvier 2014)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B00GL3HL8O
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Activé
  • Composition améliorée: Non activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°552.069 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Commentaires en ligne

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Amazon.com: 4.0 étoiles sur 5  7 commentaires
12 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Yes! We have the cultural history of bananas! 25 août 2001
Par Mary P. Campbell - Publié sur Amazon.com
Who would have thought there was so much to say about the modern
love affair between America and bananas? I should have known it,
though, for at Mathcamp the staff had entire wars based on bananas and
the pilfering thereof. We snuck extras out of the cafeteria, hid them
in refrigerators, even wrote our names on the peels in a feeble
attempt to secure a personal, steady supply. Alas, it was not to
be. How did this miracle fruit go from being an exotic food iteam for
the rich to the universal snack? Jenkins tells us how, in this very
thoroughly researched book. Pretty much anything you want to know
about bananas in the 20th century is here: medical attitudes, recipes,
social status, trade wars, banana jokes ("I'm sorry, I can't hear
you -- I've got a banana in my ear.") - you name it, it's in
here, which is surprising for such a relatively trim book. She's got a
slew of references in the back, should you ever wish to check her
sources; for the less academic of us, there's also an extensive list
of banana songs.
Bananas are such a workaday fruit, we
forget how important they have been in reflecting society. With each
new medical fad, bananas reinvent themselves as a perfect food; during
the period where dirty fruit was a concern, the thick peel of the
banana was a boon; when vitamins, minerals, and proteins were seen as
important, bananas were found to have such things in abundance; when
high-calories and high-fat were a concern, bananas were found to be an
energy-full, low-fat snack. Even stranger, at one point in history,
bananas were considered a treatment for celiac disease (an extreme
form of gluten-intolerance - so basically all breads and grains are
inedible to such children, and many died due to malnutrition); during
World War II, during which much of the banana supply was cut off,
there were stories of frantic parents mobilizing entire towns to round
up banana supplies for their sick children, sure that their children
would die without bananas. And yet, in just a generation previous,
parents had been warned against giving =any= raw fruits or vegetables
to children under the age of 7. The chapter in which this fascinating
material resides is called "Peril and Panacea", which
provides a prismatic view of the changing medical atmosphere in
America in the 20th century. A few other details which I found
interesting: there were banana cookbooks, one of the recipes being for
"Bananas and Bacon" - I kid you not. There's even a picture
of it in the book. As well, much of the editorial cartoons and jokes
involving banana peels reflected anti-immigrant sentiment, once
bananas had become so cheap even the newly arrived poor could afford
to eat them. Of course, there are a couple of obligatory "banana
as phallus" remarks (explaining why proper young women were to
use a knife and fork to eat the offending fruit), but they do not
overwhelm. Sometimes a banana is just a banana.
The only
other fruit that could possibly have had as much impact on the
American psyche is the apple (well, maybe the orange). Though this is
a history book, it is far from dry, and Jenkins lets off a couple
zingers of her own. If you've ever eaten a banana or know someone who
has, this book is for you; so I guess that means about everyone. I
have no idea, then, why this isn't at the top of the bestseller
10 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Bananas in Repetition 9 septembre 2003
Par V. Phin - Publié sur Amazon.com
For those fascinated with bananas, this book offers an insight into the toothsome tropical tube. Aside from some cautions which I will discuss further on, the book is full of useful and little-known information, like the coinage of the term "Banana Republic"; the histories of two large companies, Chiquita and Dole; and the change in ideas concerning the banana, from tropical delicacy to poor-man's fruit. Sadly, as this is a history of the banana in America, there is little written as to its origins in Asia and its earlier uses. Consider Bananas the story of how an inported fruit became a symbol of the United States.
I had some complaints about the book, however. The author put the chapters together like essays: each one does not have to be read before the other, as a lot of the information is repeated to illustrate a slightly different example in other contexts. This approach lends tedious reading; I could not help but think the book could be much shorter than its tight 171 pages. Moreover, some of the research is obviously low-key: she mentions banana-flavoured ice cream in stores today, but only makes use of her local groceries (Safeway & Giant) as examples. It leads me to wonder what else is written in her book as a general fact based on a small sample. The author also spends much of the text quoting verbatim recipes, sayings, and articles that are either unnecessary or redundant.
Nevertheless, for those interested in the study of food, this book is not to be passed over, despite my rating of two stars of five. There are a few gems-- especially in the first few chapters-- that are of definite interest.
6 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Bananas... 8 décembre 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
An entertaining work - a complete history of the banana in American culture. How they were introduced, how and where they are grown and shipped, how we've eaten them through history, and how we have celebrated their contribution to the American diet...an engaging and fun social and political history of the most popular fruit in America (yep, we collectively eat more bananas than apples.) Reading the book made me want to eat more bananas! And, I have. I wish it had included a few recipes, even some historic ones.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A history of the banana in America 14 février 2001
Par Midwest Book Review - Publié sur Amazon.com
Bananas were unknown to United States residents until the late 1800s, but today are a well-known staple. This provides a history of the banana in America, from its initial arrival and popularization process to the natural history of bananas . From politics to buying and selling bananas, Virginia Jenkins' Bananas peppers black and white illustrations and photos with plenty of facts to appeal to both general and specialty audiences.
4 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 This IS the History of America... 27 mars 2003
Par Michael Valdivielso - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
That might sound a tad weird, but the book, by following the history of the banana, also follows America's history in showing us how the banana created developments in transportation, fed international trade in South America, created the health campaigns within the US, brought about marketing designed to create a demand for bananas and the increase in the public's interest in the tropics. The banana was also a weapon against communism and built us an American Empire. BOW BEFORE THE MIGHTY BANANA!
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