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Crazy in the Kitchen: Foods, Feuds, and Forgiveness in an Italian American Family
     

Crazy in the Kitchen: Foods, Feuds, and Forgiveness in an Italian American Family

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by Louise DeSalvo
 

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During Louise DeSalvo's childhood in 1950s New Jersey, the kitchen becomes the site for fierce generational battle. Louise's step-grandmother insists on recreating the domestic habits of her Southern Italian peasant upbringing, clashing with Louise's convenience-food-loving mother; Louise, meanwhile, dreams of cooking perfect fresh pasta in her own kitchen. But as

Overview

During Louise DeSalvo's childhood in 1950s New Jersey, the kitchen becomes the site for fierce generational battle. Louise's step-grandmother insists on recreating the domestic habits of her Southern Italian peasant upbringing, clashing with Louise's convenience-food-loving mother; Louise, meanwhile, dreams of cooking perfect fresh pasta in her own kitchen. But as Louise grows up to indulge in amazing food and travels to Italy herself, she arrives at a fuller and more compassionate picture of her own roots. And, in the process, she reveals that our image of the bounteous Italian American kitchen may exist in part to mask a sometimes painful history.
Louise DeSalvo is a writer, professor, lecturer, and scholar who lives in New Jersey. Her many books include the memoirs Vertigo, Breathless, and Adultery; the acclaimed biography Virginia Woolf: The Impact of Childhood Sexual Abuse on her Life and Work; and Writing as a Way of Healing. Recently, she edited Woolf's early novel Melymbrosia and coedited The Milk of Almonds: Italian American Women Writers on Food and Culture.
A Book Sense 76 pick in hardcover
"Louise DeSalvo packs about six courses of emotional wallop into her slim memoir...[A] tough, courageous story, one of hard-won wisdom and memory."-San Francisco Chronicle
"Illuminate[s] the difficulties of reconciling past and present...DeSalvo celebrates the table of her ancestors by savoring her own rediscovered history."-New York Times Book Review
"An affecting story of immigrants in America...These recollections are tinged with pain and beauty."-Publishers Weekly
"The dramatics of [DeSalvo's] youth, it seems, produced a superior, dedicated writer and a determined, devoted cook who may go a little crazy in the kitchen...[A] juicy, tender text, seasoned with fear, loathing, and love served Italian style."-Kirkus Reviews
Crazy in the Kitchen is in the "Home

Editorial Reviews

New York Times Book Review
"Illuminate[s] the difficulties of reconciling past and present...DeSalvo celebrates the table of her ancestors by savoring her own rediscovered history."
San Francisco Chronicle
"Louise DeSalvo packs about six courses of emotional wallop into her slim memoir...[A] tough, courageous story, one of hard-won wisdom and memory."
Patricia Volk
"In fierce and brawling prose, Louise DeSalvo evokes how food and its absence shaped three generations of her family. Now I know why Italian cooking is so good: every bite has the power to vindicate the past."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781582344706
Publisher:
Bloomsbury USA
Publication date:
01/03/2005
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
272
Sales rank:
956,132
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.57(d)

Meet the Author

Louise DeSalvo is a writer, professor, lecturer, and scholar who lives in New Jersey. Her many books include the memoirs Vertigo, Breathless, and Adultery; the acclaimed biography Virginia Woolf: The Impact of Childhood Sexual Abuse on her Life and Work; and Writing as a Way of Healing. Recently, she edited Woolf's early novel Melymbrosia and coedited The Milk of Almonds: Italian American Women Writers on Food and Culture.

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