Why Food Matters Paul Freedman

Series:
Why X Matters Series
Format:
Hardback
Publication date:
23 Nov 2021
ISBN:
9780300253771
Imprint:
Yale University Press
Dimensions:
184 pages: 197 x 127mm
Sales territories:
World

An award-winning historian makes the case for food’s cultural importance, stressing its crucial role throughout human history

Why does food matter? Historically, food has not always been considered a serious subject on par with, for instance, a performance art like opera or a humanities discipline like philosophy. Necessity, ubiquity, and repetition contribute to the apparent banality of food, but these attributes don’t capture food’s emotional and cultural range, from the quotidian to the exquisite.
 
In this short, passionate book, Paul Freedman makes the case for food’s vital importance, stressing its crucial role in the evolution of human identity and human civilizations. Freedman presents a highly readable and illuminating account of food’s unique role in our lives, a way of expressing community and celebration, but also divisive with regard to race, cultural difference, gender, and geography. This wide-ranging book will be a must-read for food lovers and all those interested in how cultures and identities are formed and maintained.

Paul Freedman is Chester D. Tripp Professor of History at Yale University. He specializes in medieval social history, the history of Spain, comparative studies of the peasantry, trade in luxury products, and the history of cuisine. He lives in Pelham, NY.