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Home > Catalog > The Cambridge World History of Food 2 Part Boxed Hardback Set
The Cambridge World History of Food 2 Part Boxed Hardback  Set


  • 165 b/w illus.
  • Page extent: 2210 pages
  • Size: 253 x 203 mm
  • Weight: 5.45 kg

Library of Congress

  • Dewey number: 641.3/09
  • Dewey version: 21
  • LC Classification: TX353 .C255 2000
  • LC Subject headings:
    • Food--History
    • Women--Great Britain--History--Middle Ages, 0-10

Library of Congress Record

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2 Hardback books

 (ISBN-13: 9780521402163 | ISBN-10: 0521402166)

  • Published October 2000

In stock

$137.00 (R)

An undertaking without parallel or precedent, this monumental two-volume work encapsulates much of what is known of the history of food and nutrition throughout the span of human life on earth. It constitutes a vast and essential chapter in the history of human health and culture. Ranging from the eating habits of our prehistoric ancestors to food-related policy issues we face today, this work covers the full spectrum of foods that have been hunted, gathered, cultivated, and domesticated; their nutritional makeup and uses; and their impact on cultures and demography. It offers a geographical perspective on the history and culture of food and drink and takes up subjects from food fads, prejudices, and taboos to questions of food toxins, additives, labeling, and entitlements. It culminates in a dictionary that identifies and sketches out brief histories of plant foods mentioned in the text--over 1,000 in all--and additionally supplies thousands of common names and synonyms for those foods. The essays in this volume are the work of 220 experts in fifteen countries, in fields from agronomy to zoology. Every chapter is accompanied by bibliographical references. The volumes are organized in the following sections: 1. A determination of what our Paleolithic ancestors ate during their stay on the planet (over 99 percent of the time humankind has lived on earth). 6 chapters 2. An extensive treatment of the domestication and development of each of humankind's staple foods. 60 chapters 3. The history of our dietary liquids from beer through soft drinks to water. 13 chapters 4. Studies on the discovery of vitamins, minerals, proteins, fats, and the essential fatty acids along with a look at what they do for us. 37 chapters 5. A history of food and drink for all of the countries in the world. In addition there is a chapter on culinary history. 23 chapters 6. Historical issues involving human health, such as nutrition and mortality decline, height and nutrition, infection and nutrition. 18 chapters 7. Contemporary food-related policy issues are treated in this penultimate section of the work. Examples include chapters on food labeling, food biotechnology and the RDAs. 13 chapters 8. The last section of the work is a food-plant dictionary with over 1,000 entries that emphasize history and usage. The dictionary also includes over 4,000 synonyms for the names of plant food. Here readers well-informed about potatoes or asparagus can learn about lesser-known or strictly regional foods such as ackee or zamia and--among the thousands of synonyms provided--can discover that an aubergine is an eggplant, that "swedes" are rutabagas, and that "bulgar" comes from bulghur, which means "bruised grain."


Part I. Determining What Our Ancestors Ate; Part II. Staple Foods; Part III. Dietary Liquids; Part IV. The Nutrients - Deficiencies and Surfeits; Part V. Food and drink around the world; Part VI. History, Nutrition, and Health; Part VII. Contemporary Food-Related Policy Issues; Part VIII. A Dictionary of the World's Plant Foods.

Prize Winner

Finalist for James Beard Foundation Writing and Reference Book Award

Guild of Food Writers Special Commendation--Food Book of the Year 2001


"A scholarly work, edited by Kenneth F. Kiple and Kriemhild Coneé Ornelas and published in November, peppers its research with the opinions of its contributors, most of whom are associated with universities...the inquisitive food lover will find much to sift through from the beginning chapter on what ancient people ate, to one on contemporary food-policy such works go, this is one of the more thought-provoking." New York Times

"In a word: Wow. Only serious foodophiles need plunk down this much money for this much book - two huge volumes, in fact. But if you're in the market for a totally comprehensive book that serves as the last work on all things gastronomic, here's your nirvana. The World History of Food is part fascinating reading, part essential reference tool. What's not in here doesn't exist." USA Today

"For students in biology, botany, agriculture, nutrition, anthropology, history, etc., this publication will serve as an educational resouce. It should be part of the reference library in the school and classroom from high school to the post-secondary level... read the extraordinary contents and marvel at the wondrous revelations." Prof. R. Hoots, The American Biology Teacher

"If nothing else, this volume...shows that food has finally and irrefutably become an intellectually reputable object of study. It's hard not to feel a giggly kind of pleasure at the full extent of knowledge on display in the Cambridge World History of Food." The New Yorker

"Virtually anyone with an interest in food will find it useful, and those with a professional interest in food and nutrition will find it indispensable. It is a superb reference...unlike many reference books, it is a pleasure to read...truly a book to savor." New England Journal of Medicine

"This work is an essential reference, assembling in one place information formerly available only in medical and historical textbooks. It should also greatly help teachers compiling reading lists for growing fields of food history - and pursuade their colleagues that this really is a serious discipline." New York Times Book Review

"[A] tour de force...With information that is up-to-date, a format that is easy to use and a fresh, engaging approach to their subject, Kiple and Ornelas have prepared a magnificent resource. Serious students of health and anthropology, as well as libraries, provide an obvious market for this two-volume treatise." Publishers Weekly

"...for students, chefs, researchers and food fanatics with an academic bent, "The Cambridge World History of Food" will be indispensible." Associated Press

"An unpredicted work that gives historical, nutritional, and cultural context to the foods that have sustained people for the past 750,000 ears on Earth...A masterful work on a subject that is infinitely fascinating." Gourmet Retailer

"This well-written, fully documented, closely printed, solidly bound boxed set will be an almost canonical text to the increasing number of scholars, researchers, and students who have to engage with food history...libraries and food historians must have this book. Very many students (and others) will use it and will learn from it." Journal of World History

"Simply the most comprehensive reference on food ever published."

Padma Lakshmi, Newsweek


Clark Spencer Larsen, Donald J. Ortner, Gretchen Theobald, Kristin D. Sobolik, Elizabeth S. Wing, Ted A. Rathbun, Mark Nathan Cohen, Mary Karasch, Joy McCorriston, G. Mazza, Ellen Messer, J. M. J. de Wet, David M. Peterson, J. Paul Murphy, Te-Tzu Chang, Hansjörg Küster, Will C. McClatchey, Mary Karasch, H. Micheal Tarver, Allan W. Austin, Patricia J. O'Brien, Nancy J. Pollock, Sheldon Aaronson, Julia Peterson, Lawrence Kaplan, Jean Andrews, Robert C. Field, David Maynard, Donald N. Maynard, Deena S. Decker-Walters, Terrence W. Walters, Janet Long, Antoinette Fauve-Chamoux, Johanna T. Dwyer, Ritu Sandhu, Sean Francis O'Keefe, Hugh C. Harries, K. G. Berger, S. M. Martin, Dorothea Bedigian, Thomas Sorosiak, Charles B. Heiser, Jr., Hansjörg Küster, J. H. Galloway, J. Allen Barksdale, Colin E. Nash, Elizabeth A. Stephens, David R. Yesner, Daniel W. Gade, Roger Blench, Kevin C. MacDonald, William J. Stadelman; 49. Dogs Stanley J. Olsen, Rosemary Luff;, Stephen Beckerman, Kevin C. MacDonald, Roger Blench, Darna L. Dufour, Joy B. Sander, Richard F. Johnston, Peter R. Cheeke, James J. Parsons,Stanley J. Olsen, Robert Hoffpauir, Richard P. Palmieri, Phillip A. Cantrell II, Murdo J. MacLeod, Steven C. Topik, James Comer, Nancy J. Pollock, Clarke Brooke, Edmund Abaka, Keith Bernon, Colin Emmins, John H. Weisburger, Christopher Hamlin, James L. Newman, George Wolf, E. Roe, R. E. Hughes, Glenville Jones, Myrtle Thierry-Palmer, Herta Spencer, Basil S. Hetzel, Susan Kent, Patricia Stuart-Macadam, Theodore D. Mountokalakis, John J. B. Anderson, David S. Newman, Thomas W. Wilson, Clarence E. Grim, Forrest H. Nielsen, Ananda S. Prasad, Jacqueline L. Dupont, Kenneth J. Carpenter, Peter L. Pellett, Frederick L. Dunn, Susan Kent, Yiming Xia, Robert P. Heaney, Daphne A. Roe, Stephen V. Beck, Margaret J. Weinberger, J. D. L. Hansen, R. E. Hughes, Heather Munro Prescott, Donald D. Kasarda, Susan L. Hefle, Sujatha Panikker, Judy Perkin, K. David Patterson, Leslie Sue Lieberman, Leslie Sue Lieberman, Robert Kroes and J. H. Weisburger, Melissa H. Olken, Joel D. Howell, Stephen Seeley, Naomi F. Miller and Wilma Wetterstrom, Asia Delphine Roger, Christine S. Wilson, Françoise Sabban, Elborg Forster, Naomichi Ishige, Lois N. Magner, Marion Nestle, Kenneth Albala, Eva Barlösius, Isles Colin Spencer, Hansjörg Küster, Anneke H. van Otterloo, K. David Patterson, John C. Super, Luis Alberto Vargas, Daniel W. Gade, William F. Keegan, Jeffrey M. Pilcher, Elizabeth J. Reitz, James Comer, Linda J. Reed, James L. Newman, Brian Murton, Nancy Davis Lewis, Ellen Messer, Barbara Haber, Joyce Toomre, Barbara Wheaton, John M. Kim, William Muraskin, Nevin S. Scrimshaw, Brian Murton, Bernard Harris, Eileen Kennedy, Lawrence Haddad, Sara A. Quandt, Heather Munro Prescott, Donald T. Simeon, Sally M. Grantham-McGregor, H. H. Draper, Paul Rozin, Jeffrey M. Pilcher, Louis E. Grivetti, Carole M. Counihan, Thomas G. Benedek, J. Worth Estes, James C. Whorton; 42. Vegetarianism: another view H. Leon Abrams, Jr., Carol F. Helstosky, William H. Whitaker, Penelope Nestel, Alfred E. Harper, Eliza M. Mojduszka, Marion Nestle, Marion Nestle, Michael W. Patriza, K. T. H. Farrer, Beatrice Trum Hunter, R. E. Hughes, Gordon L. Klein, Wayne R. Snodgrass, Kenneth F. Kiple

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