Pepper was once worth its weight in gold. Onions have been used to cure everything from sore throats to foot fungus. White bread was once considered too nutritious. From hunting water buffalo to farming salmon, A Movable Feast chronicles the globalization of food over the past ten thousand years. This engaging history follows the path that food has taken throughout history and the ways in which humans have altered its course. Beginning with the days of hunter-gatherers and extending to the present world of genetically modified chickens, Kenneth F. Kiple details the far-reaching adventure of food. He investigates food's global impact, from the Irish potato famine to the birth of McDonald's. Combining fascinating facts with historical evidence, this is a sweeping narrative of food's place in the world. Looking closely at geographic, cultural and scientific factors, this book reveals how what we eat has transformed over the years from fuel to art.
Kenneth F. Kiple is a Distinguished University Professor Emeritus at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. His edited collections include The Cambridge Historical Dictionary of Disease (2003); The Cambridge World History of Food (2000, with Kriemhild Conee Ornelas); Biological Consequences of European Expansion 1450-1800 (1997, with Stephen V. Beck); Plague, Pox, and Pestilence: Disease in History (1997); The Cambridge History of World Disease (1993); and The African Exchange: Toward a Biological History of Black People (1987). Kiple is author of The Caribbean Slave: A Biological History (1984); Another Dimension to the Black Diaspora: Diet, Disease, and Racism (1981); and Blacks in Colonial Cuba 1774-1899 (1976, with Virginia Himmelsteib King). His considerable body of written works also includes numerous articles and essays in scholarly journals and books. His work has been supported with grants and fellowships from institutions including the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Fulbright Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the American Philosophical Society and the National Institutes of Health.
Preface: a movable feast: ten millennia of food globalization; Introduction: from foraging to farming; 1. Last hunters, first farmers; 2. Building the barnyard; 3. Promiscuous plants of the northern fertile crescent; 4. Peripatetic plants of Eastern Asia; 5. Fecund fringes of the northern fertile crescent; 6. Consequences of the Neolithic; 7. Enterprise and empires; 8. Faith and foodstuffs; 9. Empires in the rubble of Rome; 10. Medieval progress and poverty; 11. Spain's New World, the Northern Hemisphere; 12. New world, new foods; 13. New foods in the southern New World; 14. The Columbian exchange and the Old Worlds; 15. The Columbian exchange and the New Worlds; 16. Sugar and new beverages; 17. Kitchen Hispanization; 18. Producing plenty in paradise; 19. The frontiers of foreign foods; 20. Capitalism, colonialism, and cuisine; 21. Homemade food homogeneity; 22. Notions of nutrients and nutriments; 23. The perils of plenty; 24. The globalization of plenty; 25. Fast food, a hymn to cellulite; 26. Parlous plenty into the twenty-first century; 27. People and plenty in the twenty-first century.