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Feast: Why Humans Share Food
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Feast: Why Humans Share Food

3.4  ·  Rating Details ·  43 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
The family dinner, the client luncheon, the holiday spread--the idea of people coming together for a meal seems the most natural thing in the world. But that is certainly not the case for most other members of the animal kingdom. In Feast, archeologist Martin Jones presents both historic and modern scientific evidence to illuminate how prehistoric humans first came to shar ...more
Paperback, 364 pages
Published May 11th 2008 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published March 29th 2007)
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It seemed a bit random to me (possibly because it read it in bits and pieces over a couple of weeks) but had interesting points to make about issues I find particularly interesting:

why we live in rectangular instead of round buildings
what's so bad about eating in front of a book (or computer) instead of around the table with your family
the health of hunter/gatherer/forager cultures compared to agricultural cultures
why it makes sense to eat weeds
what was so attractive about TV dinners

I noticed th
Sep 23, 2007 Rhea rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: foodies, anthropologists, historians
A good history of food, feasting, and food culture. It has more to do with human choices than necessity, folks. If food was just about getting sustenance, the old and infirm would have a hard time eating and there would be no such thing as the circular meal around the hearth. For humans, the author argues, eating is a social and cultural act as much as it is about survival. There are a few places where I question the research (e.g. I've read conflicting information), but overall I really enjoyed ...more
Margaret Sankey
This is the archeological wing of food history. Using vignettes based on key archeological sites, Jones reconstructs the way in which humans developed the desire and self control to domesticate, cook, store and--crucially--share food while sitting as a group and making eye contact. Then, at the end, he asks why it is that we spent all this time getting from competitively tearing apart carcasses just to eat TV dinners by ourselves.
Nov 04, 2009 Sara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The first half was really interesting and I liked how he set up each chapter with a brief imagined narrative of foodways in the past. Unfortunately, it seemed he missed a lot of major points, especially as he moved forward in time and he became overly focused on the importance/utilization of food in Europe. Still a good intro to the archaeology of food though.
Jun 23, 2008 Amber rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yeay! Would be a 5 but for some editing issues. I highly recommend to anyone interested in food, socialization, or anthropology.
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Aug 31, 2014 Rose rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Some interesting info but seemed a little unfocused. Some well chosen illustrations.
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