Salt: A World History by Mark Kurlansky

591 Words Jan 25th, 2018 2 Pages
This novel explains the importance of salt, a mineral our bodies need, but cannot create; more than just an ordinary condiment, a substance of life. The book jacket identifies the book with the tagline:
Salt – the only rock we eat – has made a glittering, often surprising contribution to the history of humankind. Kurlansky begins with a personal recollection of his love affair with salt and quickly merges into how salt shaped trade, became a symbol of power, wealth, and oppression; influenced regional economics; and of course seasoned various foods. The book begins by traveling back thousands of years from the brine wells of Ancient China to the salt-drilling techniques the Chinese invented. The book conveys about the origins of soy sauce in China and how it merged into the creation of fish sauce in Vietnam. Kurlansky then moves to the Roman and Mediterranean use of salt. Kurlansky also explains how various types of food were processed with salt such as olives, whale, ham, sausage, vegetables, and predominately cheese, and fish, amongst the most prevalent. He discusses cheese making in Italy and France and salt mines. The book spans from ancient times, to modern times, across continents and back again up to America today. Egypt, Rome, America, and China are all depicted expressing their love of salts flavor enhancing properties. The book can be described partially as a historical…
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