Pub. Date:
Yale University Press
The Bagel: The Surprising History of a Modest Bread

The Bagel: The Surprising History of a Modest Bread

by Maria Balinska
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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780300158205
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publication date: 09/29/2009
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 401,799
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 6.70(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Maria Balinska is editor of BBC Radio’s World Current Affairs department, and a journalist and documentary maker specializing in Eastern Europe and the United States. She lives in London.

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The Bagel: The Surprising History of a Modest Bread 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
balbs on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I agree totally with messpots.... the historical perspective is fascinating but .the author doesn't think enough about readers drawn to an interesting subject who need some background as well.
DieFledermaus on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This short history of bagels can be interesting but nothing to write home about. The author describes various ring-shaped breads that are boiled and baked then moves on to possible origins of the bagel in central Europe. She describes bagel myths such as the relation of the bagel to Polish King Jan Sobieski and the appearance of the bagel in songs and stories. The history of the bagel is a history of bakers as well as the history of the Jewish community. In America, the bagel starts out as an immigrant food and Balinska describes in detail the powerful bakers¿ union in New York. The final chapters deal with the mass marketing of the bagel. Balinska has clearly done a lot of research and much of the history is interesting even if sometimes the topic moves far from bagels. She pretty much stays only in Poland though ¿ surely there must have been important events in bagel history in other countries. There was perhaps too much on union politics. The chapter on the Americanization of bagels is the best ¿ first several technical developments had to happen (machines to make the bagels, frozen bagels for transport), then Balinska describes the promotion and distribution of the bagel. It was fun to see some early articles describing what exactly a bagel was. The last chapter describes the life of the bagel in Canada and the U.K. as well as a common concern about which bagels are authentic.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The history of the Bagel I found very interesting, not knowing where it had originated. The author's description and how it all started I found very intriging. The author also included history of the country where it all started and how it became so popular in the United States. I would recommend this to anyone interested in a variety of foods.