The Cape of Good Hope With New Observations on Nature and Mankind by an Officer of the King (). SIDNEY W. MINTZ. SWEETNESS. AND POWER. Mintz - Sweetness and Power - Free download as PDF File .pdf), Text File .txt) or view my colleague Profesor Ashraf Ghani, as well as Dr. Sidney Cantor. -3 3 t..i t.3 c 1. /iJG&t-s i t1. SIDNEY.W. MINTZ. SWEETNESS. AND POWER. THE PLACE OF SUGAR. IN MODERN HISTORY. DEDALUS-ACERVO-FEA.
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Sidney Mintz (‐) Quoted in Mintz, Sweetness and Power: The Place of Sugar in Modern History (New York,. NY: Viking, ), p. In Sweetness and Power, Sidney Mintz illuminates and discusses the social and economic He examines the power structures that made it possible for sugar to. (London: J. Johnson & J. Edwards, ). (Photo courtesy of Richard and Sally Price). SIDNEY W. MINTZ. SWEETNESS. AND POWER. THE PLACE OF SUGAR .
The work of Sidney Mintz is incredibly relevant for the understanding of the ongoing process of cultural globalization in a historically and contextually sensitive manner.
As a Puerto Rican who came to the United States for graduate studies in cultural theory in the s, the work of Sidney Mintz was an inspiration. I never had the chance to meet him personally, yet his influence shaped my career as much as my teachers. Every time I started a new project, I found that Sidney Mintz had already written something relevant in that area.
In this book Mintz transcribed and commented on the autobiographical testimony of Don Taso, a Puerto Rican sugar cane worker.
This testimony provides unmatched insights into the transformation of Puerto Rico in the first half of the 20th century as a colony of the United States. When my interest turned to food, taste and colonialism, Sweetness and Power was the foundational text that showed that the study of food and taste is no trivial matter.
Sidney Mintz never stopped writing and lecturing.
He continued to edit volumes and to introduce the work of the next generation of scholars. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, Marshall: Southwestern University. Basel: Akademie Verlag, Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, xxiii-xxviii. Netherly, eds. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University press: vii-viii. Porter, eds.
London: Routledge, Drescher, eds. Pittsburgh: Pittsburgh University Press, Ibero-Americana Pragensia, Supplementum 5: Margolis, eds. Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press, Svensson, eds.
Boston: Beacon Press, ix-xxi. Kotler, eds. Ratzeburg: F. Licht, Wolf , Critique of Anthropology 9 1 : Amsterdam: Van Loghum Slaterus, London: Macmillan Publishers Ltd. In Deverre, C. Price, eds. Moya Pons, and S. Engerman eds. Font, eds.
Daniels, eds. The sources of sugar involve those tropical and sub tropical regons that were tansfonned into Britsh colonies, and so we must examine the relationships between such colonies and the motherland, also the areas that produced no sugar but the tea with which it was drunk, and the people who were enslaved in order to produce it.
Such an inquiry inevitbly bring many more questions m its wake.
We need to reflect on those social reformers, such as Jonas Hanway, who inveighed against the wastefulness and prodigality of the laboring classes because they came to want tea and sugar; and on their opponent, the sugar brokers and refiners and shippers, such as George Porter, who won out over the reformers because tey envisioned sugar's benefactons for all Englishmen-and strug gled to change the nature of the market.
This also means seeing how, over rime, the exigencies of work changed where, how, and when ordinary people ate, and how new foods wer created, with new virtues. Perhaps most important of all, we must understand how, in the creation of an entirely new economic system, strange and foreign luxuries, unknown even to European nobility a few short centuries earlier, could so swiftly become part of the crucial socal Center of British daily life, the universal substances of socal relationship for the farthest-flung empire i world history.
And then we shall have retured-though on a different level of explana ton-to our fellow humans the! Kung, dividing and redividing ther eland meat as they validate te social worth of rhe links thOt bind them to one another. Studying the varying use of a single ingestble like sugar is rather like using a litmus test on p3rticular environment. Any such trace able fature can highlight, by irs intensity, scale, and perhaps spread, it assocation with orher features with which it has 3 regular but not invariant relaton, and in some cases can serve as an index of them.
Such associatons can be broad and important-as between rats and disease, or drought and famine, or nutiton and fertility-.
The affinity between such phenomena may be intrinsic and explicable, as with, say, rats and disease. But of course the associaton may also be quite arbitrary, neither "causal" nor "functonal," as in the case of sugar and spice-substances freig mEurope, carried thenc from dis tnt lands, gradually entering into the diet of people trying them out for the frst rme; Iinked together mostly by the accidet of usage and, to some extent, by origin, but overlapping and diverging as their uses overlapped and diverged and as the demand for tem rose and fell.
Sugar has bee assocated during irs history wirh slavery, in the colonies; with meat, in flavoring or concealing taste; 8- with fruit, in ping; with honey, as a substitute and rival. And sugar was assocated with tea, cofee, and chocolate; much of its history in the,late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries springs from that partcular association.
Sugar was also first associated with the rich and the noble classes, and it remained out of the reach of the less privile,ed for centuries. In staying with sugar, the aim is not to de-emphasize other foods, bm to make clear the changng uses and meaning of sugar itself over rime. As uses change or acc added on, as use both deepens and broadens, meanings also change. Tere is nothing "natura'" or inevitable about these processes; they have no inbuih dynamic of their own.
The relationship between the producton of sugar and its consumption changed over rme and, as it did, the uses to which sugar was put and me meaning to which it gave rise also changed.
By keeping sugar itself as the focus, we can actually see more clearly how its relationship other foods, mose wim which it was com bined and those which it eventually supplanted, was altered. Nutritionists can construct diets for the species based on the best scientifc information available. We appear to b capable of eating and liking JUSt about anything mat is not immediately toxic. Cross-cultural studies of dietary preferences reveal eloquently that the universes mat human groups treat matter of-factly as their "nanlCal environments" are clearly social, sym bolically constructed universes.
What constitutes "good food," like what constitutes good weather, a good spouse, or a fulfilling life, is a social, not a biologicl, matter. Good food, as Uvi-Strauss suggested long ago, must be good to think about before it becomes good to eat.
If we look at the whole sweep of human cultural evolution and concentrate on that last "minute" of geologcal tme when the do mestication of plants and animals O Urs, we can s that almost aU human beings who have ever lived were members of societies in which some one partcular vegetable food was "good. J Most great and many minor sedentary civilizations have ben built on the cultivaton of a particular complex carbohydrate, such as maize or potatoes or rice or millet or wheat, In these starch based societies, usually but not always horticultural or agricultural, pple are nourished by their bodily conversion of me complex carbohydrates, either gains or tuhers, i nto body sugars.
To the Bemba each meal, 1Dbe utisfctory, must be composed of to consttuents: a thick porridge ubwalt made of millet and the relish uun of vegetables, meat or fsh, which is eaten with it.