Garlic and Oil: Politics and Food in Italy

Overview

Pasta, cappuccino, olive oil?Italian food is a favorite in our cafes, restaurants and homes. But what is the history of Italian cuisine? And where do we get our notions about Italian food? Contrary to popular belief, the Italian diet was inadequate and unchanging for many decades. Successive political regimes?liberal, fascist, democratic?struggled to improve eating habits, shaping not only Italian cuisine but Italian identity. This book reveals the harsh reality behind the myths...

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Overview

Pasta, cappuccino, olive oil—Italian food is a favorite in our cafes, restaurants and homes. But what is the history of Italian cuisine? And where do we get our notions about Italian food? Contrary to popular belief, the Italian diet was inadequate and unchanging for many decades. Successive political regimes—liberal, fascist, democratic—struggled to improve eating habits, shaping not only Italian cuisine but Italian identity. This book reveals the harsh reality behind the myths surrounding this highly-romanticized cuisine.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The topic is alluring, the style accessible...It is very timely to have a book on Italian food that is a work of serious scholarship...[This is] a book that many of us have been waiting for."—Robert Lumley, University College London

"Why have Italians been able to resist the blandishments of fast food for so long? In this fascinating study Carol Helstosky shows that politics play no less a role than culture, environment and the social order in shaping what we eat. Her exploration of the origins and survival of the 'Mediterranean diet' from Mussolini to the present makes Garlic and Oil an original and immensely readable contribution to the rapidly growing literature on food and its many histories."—John A. Davis, University of Connecticut

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781859738900
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 6/19/2004
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Meet the Author

Carol F. Helstosky is Assistant Professor of European History, University of Denver.

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Table of Contents

Unification Through Monotony, Italy 1861-1914
• The Great War and the Rise of State Intervention, Italy 1914-22
• The Cooking of Consent, Italy 1922-35
• Austerity and Decline, Italy 1935-45
• The Challenge of Abundance, Italy 1945-60
• A Cuisine of Scarcity
• Epilogue: Food in Italy Today

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