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1 Home & Garden Cooking and Food- Historical Food and Cooking

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Something from the Oven: Reinventing Dinner in 1950s America

by

Something from the Oven: Reinventing Dinner in 1950s America Cover

ISBN13: 9780143034919
ISBN10: 014303491x
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A lively narrative history of how American home cooking changed in the 1950s — from "anti-cooking" marketing to Julia Child.

In this delightfully surprising history, Laura Shapiro — author of the classic Perfection Salad — recounts the prepackaged dreams that bombarded American kitchens during the fifties. Faced with convincing homemakers that foxhole food could make it in the dining room, the food industry put forth the marketing notion that cooking was hard; opening cans, on the other hand, wasn't. But women weren't so easily convinced by the canned and plastic-wrapped concoctions and a battle for both the kitchen and the true definition of homemaker ensued. Beautifully written and full of wry observation, this is a fun, illuminating, and definitely easy-to-digest look back at a crossroads in American cooking.

Review:

"In the fifties, we're always told, the food industry barged into the American kitchen, waving TV dinners, and destroyed home cooking. Not so fast, Shapiro says....[V]ery funny, and also subtle." The New Yorker

Review:

"[A] well-researched history of the relationship between the American woman's domestic role as family cook and the American food industry....[H]ighly readable." Library Journal

Review:

"Entertaining and well researched, but disjointed." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Shapiro's graceful, flowing prose makes this history of both cooking and women utterly compelling." Booklist

Synopsis:

In this delightfully surprising history, Shapiro — author of the classic Perfection Salad — recounts the prepackaged dreams that bombarded American kitchens during the fifties.

Synopsis:

In this captivating blend of culinary history and popular culture, the award-winning author of Perfection Salad shows us what happened when the food industry elbowed its way into the kitchen after World War II, brandishing canned hamburgers, frozen baked beans, and instant piecrusts. Big Business waged an all-out campaign to win the allegiance of American housewives, but most women were suspicious of the new foods—and the make-believe cooking they entailed. With sharp insight and good humor, Laura Shapiro shows how the ensuing battle helped shape the way we eat today, and how the clash in the kitchen reverberated elsewhere in the house as women struggled with marriage, work, and domesticity. This unconventional history overturns our notions about the ’50s and offers new thinking on some of its fascinating figures, including Poppy Cannon, Shirley Jackson, Julia Child, and Betty Friedan.

About the Author

Laura Shapiro was an award-winning writer at Newsweek for more than fifteen years, and has written for many publications, including The New York Times, Rolling Stone, Granta, and Gourmet.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Do Women Like to Cook?

1. The Housewife's Dream

2. Something from the Oven

3. Don't Check Your Brains at the Kitchen Door

4. I Hate to Cook

5. Is She Real?

6. Now and Forever

Epilogue

Notes

Bibliography

Permissions and Credits

Index

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Jenn, August 28, 2006 (view all comments by Jenn)
With WWII over, what do you do with all the left over canned meats? Why, you market them towards American housewives, of course! This was a facinating read, and one that would entertain anyone who likes to read about cooking, marketing, psychology, or the 1950s. I loved reading about some of the worst recipes from the era, such as strawberry jello and pickles. Or all the things mayo was added into. There were times I wondered how people actually ate some of the stuff described, but I suppose someone did! I'm glad I live in a time where you don't have to worry about going to a church pot-luck and maybe getting pickles or mayo in your jello! :) Or visiting someone and getting half a cinnamon doughnut with strawberry jam on it, covered in cottage cheese!
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780143034919
Author:
Shapiro, Laura
Publisher:
Penguin Books
Author:
Shapiro, Laurie Gwen
Subject:
Social history
Subject:
Women's Studies - History
Subject:
Regional & Ethnic - American - General
Subject:
History
Subject:
Gender Studies-Womens Studies
Edition Description:
Paperback / softback
Publication Date:
20050331
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
b/w illustrations or photos in front mat
Pages:
336
Dimensions:
7.78x5.14x.60 in. .49 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Business » Management
Cooking and Food » Reference and Etiquette » Historical Food and Cooking
History and Social Science » Gender Studies » Womens Studies
History and Social Science » World History » General

Something from the Oven: Reinventing Dinner in 1950s America Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$8.50 In Stock
Product details 336 pages Penguin Books - English 9780143034919 Reviews:
"Review" by , "In the fifties, we're always told, the food industry barged into the American kitchen, waving TV dinners, and destroyed home cooking. Not so fast, Shapiro says....[V]ery funny, and also subtle."
"Review" by , "[A] well-researched history of the relationship between the American woman's domestic role as family cook and the American food industry....[H]ighly readable."
"Review" by , "Entertaining and well researched, but disjointed."
"Review" by , "Shapiro's graceful, flowing prose makes this history of both cooking and women utterly compelling."
"Synopsis" by , In this delightfully surprising history, Shapiro — author of the classic Perfection Salad — recounts the prepackaged dreams that bombarded American kitchens during the fifties.
"Synopsis" by ,

In this captivating blend of culinary history and popular culture, the award-winning author of Perfection Salad shows us what happened when the food industry elbowed its way into the kitchen after World War II, brandishing canned hamburgers, frozen baked beans, and instant piecrusts. Big Business waged an all-out campaign to win the allegiance of American housewives, but most women were suspicious of the new foods—and the make-believe cooking they entailed. With sharp insight and good humor, Laura Shapiro shows how the ensuing battle helped shape the way we eat today, and how the clash in the kitchen reverberated elsewhere in the house as women struggled with marriage, work, and domesticity. This unconventional history overturns our notions about the ’50s and offers new thinking on some of its fascinating figures, including Poppy Cannon, Shirley Jackson, Julia Child, and Betty Friedan.

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