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Eating Puerto Rico: A History of Food, Culture, and Identity
     

Eating Puerto Rico: A History of Food, Culture, and Identity

by Cruz Miguel Ortíz Cuadra
 

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Available for the first time in English, Cruz Miguel Ortiz Cuadra's magisterial history of the foods and eating habits of Puerto Rico unfolds into an examination of Puerto Rican society from the Spanish conquest to the present. Each chapter is centered on an iconic Puerto Rican foodstuff, from rice and cornmeal to beans, roots, herbs, fish, and meat. Ortiz shows how

Overview

Available for the first time in English, Cruz Miguel Ortiz Cuadra's magisterial history of the foods and eating habits of Puerto Rico unfolds into an examination of Puerto Rican society from the Spanish conquest to the present. Each chapter is centered on an iconic Puerto Rican foodstuff, from rice and cornmeal to beans, roots, herbs, fish, and meat. Ortiz shows how their production and consumption connects with race, ethnicity, gender, social class, and cultural appropriation in Puerto Rico.
Using a multidisciplinary approach and a sweeping array of sources, Ortiz asks whether Puerto Ricans really still are what they ate. Whether judging by a host of social and economic factors--or by the foods once eaten that have now disappeared--Ortiz concludes that the nature of daily life in Puerto Rico has experienced a sea change.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Engaging and well-written….provides valuable insights into the connection between food and identity.--Journal of American Culture

Innovative work on Puerto Rico. . . . A food-centered history.--The Americas

A great resource for scholars focusing on food in the Caribbean.--Food, Culture and Society: An International Journal of Multidisciplinary Research

Cruz Miguel Ortiz Cuadra's innovative methodology relies on primary sources, such as menus at religious convents, hospitals, prisons, and public schools; home economics class records; and cookbooks. The book is an important contribution to the social and cultural history of the Caribbean and may also be fruitful as a primary source for studies of colonialism, Third World poverty, and underdevelopment.--The Historian

Charming and learned . . . [but] also bittersweet. . . . One ends up wondering whether, finally, the question has to be: 'Who really determines what choices are available?'--Sidney W. Mintz, Gastronomica

[Ortiz Cuadra] is a man dedicated to understanding and exploring the precise spot where food and history intersect en la isla del encanto.--NBC Latino

Well translated. . . . Recommended. All levels/libraries.--Choice

A feast for the mind . . . . highly readable and frequently entertaining.--Journal of Latin American Geography

As much as Oriz Cuadra succeeds in demythologizing the basic staples of Puerto Rican cuuisine by explaining how rice, benas, cornmeal, codfish, beef, and pork arrived on the island and how they became as popular ad they did, he also skillfully deconstucts the category of "Puerto Rican" into multiple populations defined by gender, rural vs. urban, literacy and education levels, laboring class, immigrant or island-born, government vs. private sector, and colonizer or colonized, among others.--American Historical Review

An important contribution to the social and cultural history of the Caribbean.--The Historian

"Cruz Miguel Ort&305;´z Cuadra grounds culinary culture in the logistics of conquest and colonization; migration; gender, class, and racialized struggles; climate and soil fertility; technological advances in cultivation, preservation, and transport; and the ebbs and flows of market exchanges and financial investments. Ort&305;z Cuadra employs an impressive range of sources and has creatively put together a multidisciplinary methodological apparatus to meet the challenge of historicizing symbolic practices such as taste, food preferences, and national belonging. In sum, Ort&305;z Cuadra provides an innovative introduction to the histories of colonialism, struggle, and cultural hybridization that is useful in the classroom and beyond--Hispanic American Historical Review

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781469608846
Publisher:
The University of North Carolina Press
Publication date:
10/14/2013
Series:
Latin America in Translation/en Traducción/em Tradução
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
408
File size:
3 MB

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
A magnificent book. Ortiz provides a fascinating anthropological, historical, and sociological study of Puerto Rican culture articulated through the foods consumed historically on the island. But the book is about much more than that. It is a history of the deep culture of Puerto Ricans since the Spanish conquest, addressing race, ethnicity, and class."
--Cesar J. Ayala, coauthor of Puerto Rico in the American Century: A History Since 1898

Meet the Author

Cruz Miguel Ortiz Cuadra is senior lecturer in the department of humanities at the University of Puerto Rico, Humacao, and author of Puerto Rico en la olla, among other books.

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