Bananas: An American History

by Virginia Scott Jenkins | Nonfiction |
ISBN: 1560989661 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingeponine38wing of Winchester, Massachusetts USA on 9/17/2012
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4 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingeponine38wing from Winchester, Massachusetts USA on Monday, September 17, 2012
This was in interesting discussion of everything you ever wanted to know about bananas (and their history in the U.S.)

Whereas nowadays they're often the cheapest fruit for sale at the market, I never realized that when first introduced, they were a luxury, eaten almost exclusively by wealthier Americans. I also didn't know that bananas don't grow on trees: "...in fact, the banana is a huge herbaceous plant that grows to a height of fifteen to thirty feet. It is perhaps the largest plant on earth that does not have a woody stem above the ground."

Chapters include:
Introducing Bananas
Politics and Bananas
Transporting Bananas
Selling Bananas
Peril and Panacea
Eating Bananas
Celebrating Bananas
Meaning of Bananas

The appendix contains "Songs of Bananas".

An entertaining read.

Here's one of my favorite passages, from the "Eating Bananas" chapter:
"The American Domestic Cyclopaedia included recipes for banana cake (slices of fruit between the layers), banana pie, ambrosia (a mixture of pineapple, banana, and coconut}, fried bananas and fruit salad. The fruit salad was described as "a new dish with which epicures tempt fate and give an impetus to stomach anodynes [which] is composed of sliced oranges, sliced pineapples, sliced bananas, sliced hard-boiled eggs, sliced cucumbers, vinegar, and sugar."

All I can say is, YIKES!

There are also discussions about the comedic use of slipping on a banana peel, the Chiquita Banana Girl and the associated song, the earlier dangers of finding unwelcome wildlife in a shipment, and...well, you name it; if it relates to bananas it's probably in here. A few b/w photos of old advertising posters and the like is a nice touch as well.

Fun.

Journal Entry 2 by wingeponine38wing at Winchester, Massachusetts USA on Monday, September 17, 2012

Released 7 yrs ago (9/17/2012 UTC) at Winchester, Massachusetts USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Added to MaryZee's Biographies of Things Bookbox and traveling to 6of8.

RIP, MaryZee. We miss you.

Journal Entry 3 by quietorchid at Saint Paul, Minnesota USA on Thursday, May 16, 2013
Taking from 6of8's MaryZee's Biography of things Bookbox. It looks interesting!

Journal Entry 4 by quietorchid at Saint Paul, Minnesota USA on Friday, May 17, 2013
Fairly good book on a fairly odd topic: Bananas. Itwas interesting to see the development of an American market, and funny to see the attempts to make them a meat substitute. This was the strongest part of the book. Although I have to admit, I loved Fulton TN and KY's development of a banana festival with the ultimate goal to 'fight communism with bananas.' Got to love small town boosterism. And enthusiasm.

Enjoyable, quirky, and interesting. All pictures, but four, come from a private banana museum.

Journal Entry 5 by quietorchid at Saint Paul, Minnesota USA on Monday, July 22, 2013

Released 6 yrs ago (7/22/2013 UTC) at Saint Paul, Minnesota USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Placed in 6of8's MaryZee's Biography of Things Bookbox. Travel far ....

Journal Entry 6 by winginnaewing at Aurora, Colorado USA on Saturday, July 27, 2013
Came to Colorado MaryZee's Bookish Bookbox --

I am going to let the Bananas travel on with the oranges

Journal Entry 7 by winghyphen8wing at Honolulu, Hawaii USA on Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Taken from MaryZee's Biographies of Things box with thanks.

Interesting to see how many of these "things" books are about food. :)

Journal Entry 8 by winghyphen8wing at Hawaii Book & Music Festival in Honolulu, Hawaii USA on Saturday, April 26, 2014

Released 5 yrs ago (5/3/2014 UTC) at Hawaii Book & Music Festival in Honolulu, Hawaii USA

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

To be released at our fourth annual pop-up Skygate OBCZ during the 2014 Hawaii Book and Music Festival; this may be counted for GoryDetails's April Showers/May Flowers challenge.

Larger photo and other photos from this year's Hawaii Book & Music Festival here.

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