University Press £9.99
The Hamburger, By Josh Ozersky Yale
Sunday 05 July 2009
Studying the story of the hamburger is, says food writer Josh Ozersky, "one way of studying the country that invented it, and then reinvented it again and again".
As with all icons, the humble hamburger's origins are disputed: was it created by the Menches brothers in 1885 in Hamburg, New York, when they sold their ground-beef sandwich at a country fair? Or was it when that ground-beef patty was first placed in a bun of equal size, as it was at Weber's restaurant in Tulsa in 1933?
Whatever its beginnings, the burger has become as synonymous with America as cowboys and Cadillacs, a part of its capitalist culture represented by those famed Golden Arches, now exported all over the world. Yet, the irony that this blue-collar, poor-man's feast – hot, nutritious, and easy to eat while working (or driving) – has become the means by which other men have made millions is not lost on Ozersky.
Its place as part of the history of Fordism is interesting, too: an unsettled past meant that Americans of the 1950s yearned for standardisation – and little was more standardised than millions of round burgers in the same comforting round baps.
Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'music
Review: Cilla, ITV TV
To mark Tolstoy's 186th birthdaybooks
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Scottish independence: Ireland since 1919 is a lesson for Scotland in what a Yes vote means
- 2 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 3 Grandmas keep accidentally tagging themselves as Grandmaster Flash on Facebook
- 4 Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
- 5 Kanye West halts concert after two fans don't stand up - doesn't realise one is in wheelchair and the other disabled
Fifty Shades of Grey movie: New picture of Anastasia Steele unveiled
Star Trek 3 to begin shooting in next six months
Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
The Walking Dead season 5 air date, trailer and season 4 recap
Robin Thicke’s hit 'Blurred Lines' lands him in court, and he had 'almost no part' in writing it
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'