Cloth $35.00 ISBN: 9781789142075 Will Publish January 1900 For sale in North and South America only

Eating the Empire

Food and Society in Eighteenth-Century Britain

Troy Bickham

Eating the Empire

Troy Bickham

Distributed for Reaktion Books

288 pages | 85 halftones | 6 1/4 x 9 1/4
Cloth $35.00 ISBN: 9781789142075 Will Publish January 1900 For sale in North and South America only
When students gathered in a London coffeehouse and smoked tobacco; when Yorkshire women sipped sugar-infused tea; or when a Glasgow family ate a bowl of Indian curry, were they aware of the mechanisms of imperial rule and trade that made such goods readily available? In Eating the Empire, Troy Bickham unfolds the extraordinary role that food played in shaping Britain during the long eighteenth century (circa 1660–1837), when such foreign goods as coffee, tea, and sugar went from rare luxuries to some of the most ubiquitous commodities in Britain—reaching even the poorest and remotest of households. Bickham reveals how trade in the empire’s edibles underpinned the emerging consumer economy, fomenting the rise of modern retailing, visual advertising, and consumer credit, and, via taxes, financed the military and civil bureaucracy that secured, governed, and spread the British Empire.
Contents
Introduction Part I: Encountering, Acquiring and Peddling 1 The Empire’s Bounty 2 The New British Consumer 3 Advertising and Imperialism Part II: Defining, Reproducing and Debating 4 Defining a British Cuisine 5 An Edible Map of Mankind 6 The Politics of Food Conclusion References Selected Sources Acknowledgements Photo Acknowledgements Index
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