Rebecca Earle

Oct 11, 2021

Feeding the People

The Politics of the Potato

Cambridge University Press 2020

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Potatoes are the world's fourth most important food crop, yet they were unknown to most of humanity before 1500. Rebecca Earle, Feeding the People: The Politics of the Potato (Cambridge UP, 2020) traces the global journey of this popular foodstuff from the Andes to everywhere. The potato's global history reveals the ways in which our ideas about eating are entangled with the emergence of capitalism and its celebration of the free market. It also reminds us that ordinary people make history in ways that continue to shape our lives. Feeding the People tells the story of how eating became part of statecraft, and provides a new account of the global spread of one of the world's most successful foods.

Daniela Gutierrez Flores is a PhD candidate in Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian Studies at the University of Chicago Romance Languages and Literatures department. Follow her on Twitter @danielagtz.

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