Dimensions: 320 Pages, 5.51 × 9.45 × 1.18 in
Published: October 25, 2011
Publisher: Knopf Canada
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 030739901X
ISBN - 13: 9780307399014
Read from the Book
A Small Starter: Questions of Food We have happy days, remember good dinners. —CHARLES DARWIN We eat to live? Yes, surely. But why then did the immortal gods also come to the table, and twice a day? —LÉON ABRIC IN THE early morning— six- forty, precisely— of May 24, 1942, a young professor of German, a resistant who had taken the underground name of Jacques Decour (his real name was Daniel Decourdemanche) and who taught before the war at the Lycée Henri IV in Paris, wrote a letter to his parents: You know that for the past two months I have been expecting what is to happen to me this morning; so I have had the time to prepare myself for it; but since I have no religion, I have not given myself up to any meditation on death. Here are a few requests. I was able to send a word to the woman I love. If you see her— soon I hope— give her your affection. This is my dearest wish. I also wish that you could keep an eye on her parents who need help badly. Give them the things that are in my apartment and which belong to their daughter: The volume of the pleiade, the fables de la fontaine, tristan, les quatre saisons, two water colors, the menu of the inn les 4 paves du roy. All these last days I have thought a lot about the good meals that we should have together when I was free. You will eat them without me, all the family together— but not sadly, please! I don’t want your thoughts to dwell on the good times that we might h
From the Publisher
Transplanted Canadian, New Yorker writer and author of
Paris to the Moon, Gopnik is publishing this major
new work of narrative non-fiction alongside his 2011 Massey
Lecture. An illuminating, beguiling tour of the morals and manners
of our present food manias, in search of eating''s deeper truths,
asking "Where do we go from here?"
Never before have so many North Americans cared so much about food.
But much of our attention to it tends towards grim calculation
(what protein is best? how much?); social preening ("I can always
score the last reservation at xxxxx"); or graphic machismo ("watch
me eat this now"). Gopnik shows we are not the first food
fetishists but we are losing sight of a timeless truth, "the table
comes first": what goes on around the table matters as much to life
as what we put on the table: families come together (or break
apart) over the table, conversations across the simplest or
grandest board can change the world, pain and romance unfold around
it--all this is more essential to our lives than the provenance of
any zucchini or the road it travelled to reach us. Whatever
dilemmas we may face as omnivores, how not what we eat ultimately
defines our society.
Gathering people and places drawn from a quarter century''s
reporting in North America and France, The Table Comes
First marks the beginning a new conversation about the way
we eat now.
About the Author
ADAM GOPNIK was raised and educated in Montreal, is married to a
Winnipegger, and still has strong ties to family here. He has been
writing for the New Yorker since 1986. Gopnik lived in
Paris from 1995 to 2000, when he wrote the international bestseller
From Paris to the Moon. He is a three-time winner
of the National Magazine Awards for Essays and for Criticism and
winner of the George Polk Award for Magazine Reporting. He now
lives in New York with his wife and their two children.
"Adam Gopnik brilliantly weaves together the history, philosophy,
and culture of food with his deep passion for cooking and the
shared pleasures of the table. Anyone who roasts a chicken at home
or eats chocolate mousse in a restaurant will be forever changed by
this book. I loved it!"
"I need to read anything that Adam Gopnik writes, and this book on
food, eating and-it follows-life is a particular feast. His acuity,
grace, sensitive intelligence (in short, his brilliance) are, as
ever, dazzlingly displayed and yet with the lightest of touches."
"Adam Gopnik's writings about food are highly intellectual and
profoundly witty, while also being warm and personal and rooted in
common sense. He thinks hard about the routines of the table, and
makes you think too."
"The perfect book for any intellectual foodie, a delicious
book packed with so much to sink your teeth into."
-Padma Lakshmi, author, actress, model, and host of the
Emmy-winning Top Chef