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Review æ PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free Ï Dan Koeppel

Banana The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World

Summary ✓ Banana The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World È PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free A gripping biological detective story that uncovers the myth mystery and endangered fate of the world's most humble fruit To most people a banana is a banana a simple yellow fruit Americans eat bananas than apples and oranges combined In others parts of the world bananas are what keep millions of people alive But for all its ubiuity the banana is surprisingly mysterious; nobody knows how bananas evolved or exactly where they originated Rich cult. Rating 3 of five2019 UPDATE Climate change bids fair to deprive us of a childhood icon says this bookOne step closer to realityThis is yet another entry in the single subject world of non fiction The narrowness of focus in books such as Salt and Cod and The Book on the Bookshelf and The Pencil and Longitude seems to be an increasingly preevalent trend in publishing I am all for it on one level since I like delving into the abstruse and wallowing in details that leave most people I know colder than a penguin s butt in the middle of the Antarctic winter but on another level I want to stop these publishers before they bore again with books inadeuately edited and organizedThere are three pieces to the bananathe history of humanity s first cultivated plant modern evidence from New Guinea shows human cultivation from 9000 years ago was of bananas but for their corms not the fingers we eat today the politics of the modern cultivation of the banana the term banana republic which I have used without thinking for 30 years has a very literal beginning and a scarily modern ring and the future of humankind s most basic and widely distributed food crop essential to survival in several parts of the world the banana is also under threat from several pests that defy modern chemistry to abate still less conuer and sueamish food o phobes in wealthy countries oppose all modern genetic engineering that could save the survival crop of many parts of the world These three strands are awkwardly interwoven with no obvious guiding editorial hand to make sense of their interrelation It s a shame too because this is a huge important topic and the author s not inconsiderable talents are well used in bringing the facts to light The loss of our American favorite banana the Cavendish from grocery shelves will be an inconvenience at most the fact that two major American corporations are double handedly is that a word responsible for the spread of the blights that threaten the world crop with the complicity of the American government should mean that we as a country are liable to find solutions to the pressing problems of food security in the places we ve so screwed over Free But that won t happen you can bet on thatBack to the booktoo much narrative drive is lost in the author s back and forth cross cutting of the basic story I wish someone had said Yo Danfirst third of the book is the banana as a plant second third is the politics of the banana last is the science of the plant I wonder if that was what they tried and the interconnections of all the information prevented its success I somehow don t think soIt s a good enough book on an important topic that SHOULD cause each person who reads it some discomfort at our societal callousness and myopia I recommend it to those most likely to be irritated by progressive politics and social liberalism Isolationists particularly encouraged to apply

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Summary ✓ Banana The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World È PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free Ellow banana the Cavendish is increasingly threatened by such a blight and there's no cure in sight Banana combines a pop science journey around the globe a fascinating tale of an iconic American business enterprise and a look into the alternately tragic and hilarious banana subculture one does exist ultimately taking us to the high tech labs where new bananas are literally being built in test tubes in a race to save the world's most beloved fru. This is one of the most fascinating books I ve read recentlyThis book covers the history and future of the humble banana It starts with its beginnings in Asia its geographic and evolutionary progressing and the arrival of the banana to AmericaBananas are incredible the popular ones have no seed and reproduce asexually Since they re all genetically identical they are very susceptible to disease In fact today s banana the Cavendish wasn t the first popular banana in the US That was the Gros Michel the Big Mike which arrived around the 1870 s By the turn of the century Panama disease was wiping out huge areas of banana farms The companies decided that the best way to fight the disease actually a fungus was to stay ahead of it by consuming huge amounts of new land and to do that they used their money and political influence to get the US military to help them thus explaining the term Banana Republic The song Yes We Have No Bananas is said to be a reference to the banana shortages caused by the diseaseEventually around the 1950 s banana producers switched over to the Cavendish The taste was good enough most say it wasn t uite as good although a few disagree it was shippable but not uite as sturdy as the Big Mike and most importantly it was resistant to Panama disease Something similar could happen today and so the author talks about attempts to develop new types of bananas that could replace the CavendishThe book doesn t just talk about the banana in the US it talks about its influence across the globe In some parts of the world people get 70% of the calories from the bananaIn short this book exceeded my expectations spectacularly I don t think it will have much re read value but it entertained me wonderfully this time

Review æ PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free Ï Dan Koeppel

Summary ✓ Banana The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World È PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free Ural lore surrounds the fruit In ancient translations of the Bible the 'apple' consumed by Eve is actually a banana it makes sense doesn't it Entire Central American nations have been said to rise and fall over the banana But the biggest mystery about the banana today is whether it will survive A seedless fruit with a uniue reproductive system every banana is a genetic duplicate of the next and therefore susceptible to the same blights Today's y. A review with digressions for people considering this as a book club choiceAvoiding responsibility like lying should be practiced even when not strictly necessary if one really wishes to stay at the top of one s game Still the inability to bi locate leads to occasional and unavoidable assignment of responsibility in one s absence like when the book club while I was at work recently assigned me to choose a book for the coming reading season Perhaps my real error occurred days earlier when I mentioned to the Long Suffering Wife LSW a fellow book club member that the book club s list of potential reads never included the micro history a genre of which I am very fond Sometimes on long car trips with LSW we compete for who can make up the absurdest micro history title following the pattern X The Y that Changed the World where X is the name of an object and Y is the category to which the object belongs I remember suggesting XMauve and then found out later there is really a book about this proving that politics is not the only endeavor where satire has become obsoleteSo LSW came home from book club with the suspiciously pat story that my name had been drawn randomly to choose a book for book club in the category micro history My desire to avoid responsibility warred valiantly with my much formidable desire not to cross LSW who can be very fierce if provoked I tell you from hard experience I decided that choosing a micro history was unavoidable LSW reported that members of the book club had never heard of micro histories What cave do readers like this live in She sold the book club on the novel idea of micro histories by emphasizing the sub genre of micro histories called commodity micro histories Mark Kurlansky is a well known and persistent practitioner of this genre with books on cod oysters salt and most recently paper There are also popular micro histories from other authors of alcohol milk chocolate coffee at least two tea vanilla eels opium diamonds uranium oranges tomatoes cotton caviar olives olive oil sugar and pencils A cousin to this genre is the micro history on man made constructs and other non commodities including but not limited to home cleanliness color reading marriage wives but interestingly not husbands cancer rabies sex zero infinity rats swearing corpses and many But my favorite genre is the history micro history where a single event spiders out in all directions often with interesting unintended conseuences The most famous and best selling of this genre is probably the history of the decades long race to correctly determine longitude but there are many historical events that have received a fine treatment including the sinking of the Lusitania the assassination of President James Garfield the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire 17th century Tulip mania the eruption of Krakatoa the mad bomber of 1950 s Manhattan murders too numerous to mention individually and my sentimental favorite the Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919But LSW warned that however endearingly enthusiastic I am about the topic other book group members were unlikely to find the Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919 as compelling a topic since we are sadly a long long way from Boston in the company of people who in a few inexplicable cases have not even visited Boston Also she reminded me she sold the idea to the book group mostly through examples of commodity micro histories see aboveHaving narrowed down the options that far I was faced with the vexing uestion I ask myself several times a day What would a normal person do I mean I d happily read 400 pages about pencils but I ve noticed that other people might think that was a waste of time Many of these same people might have no compunction about spending hours on the details of the lives of the latest no talent celebrity or selfish aristocrat but that s off topic So short is good The shortest microhistory I ve found is John McPhee s 1967 book on oranges which is really a long New Yorker article somehow padded out to 160 pages for publication Still it s 50 years old and felt that the book club might want something of recent vintageLife is somewhat vexed and full of anguish at this moment in our history so I felt the book club would look favorably on a book that might generate cheerful conversation while everybody was pounding back the Merlot This ruled out for example the microhistory about uranium I really enjoyed the audiobook version but a lot of it I remember was about people suffering terribly in mines Then of course once the stuff gets above ground things get really grim what with nuclear weapons and all Seeing as how nuclear weapons once thought a fading threat are now making an unwelcome re appearance in people s nightmares I thought the members of the book group would welcome the opportunity to get away from all that Bananas are cheerful This is noted even in the book itself finally getting to the actual book in uestion which includes a remarkably informative chapter on the 1922 Tin Pan Alley novelty hit Yes We Have No Bananas and yet another one devoted to slipping on a banana peel as classic movie sight gag Since the book s publication in 2008 the banana has continued to provide comic fodder as the favorite foodconversation topicgo to any occasion utterance of the yellow pill shaped Minions of lucrative movie and associated licensing fameStill the book group cannot be exclusively unicorns and rainbows Some grit and adversity is reuired to generate conversation Bananas and this book have that as well As the precious few readers who have persisted this far and I thank you might well be aware bananas here I uote LSW have not had sex for a long time meaning they haven t reproduced in the traditional way yielding a world wide monoculture of delicious and easy to transport fruit Sadly things bite back as in this case when it was only a matter of time before a banana blight bred itself into existence and roared through the near identical genetic population leaving a swath of useless and distinctly unfunny brown rotting plants in its wakeAs a result there is controversy to discuss since a savior for the banana may come in the form of genetically modified organisms GMOs Normally I refrain from discussing this topic because well I am a liberal in the American political sense and like all of us now tend to socialize with the like minded While we are all uick to condemn American conservatives as science deniers and crackpot conspiracy theories on global warming discussing GMOs seems to be our side s opportunity to engage in similar behavior We can condemn all who think that genetic manipulation could actually improve our food supply and security to perdition as lackeys of the world wide mostache twirling Monsanto led patented seed hawking agro industrial conspiracy evidence be damned Since I hold people who generally agree with me to a higher level of intellectual rigor that people who don t generally agree with me who must be idiots right I tend to want to abuse to people like this This tendency is stronger when the tongue is loosened by Merlot as I fear it will be at the book club But I think if I just put some Post ItTM Notes on my Kindle I bring to the club saying something like Don t be rude to ill informed I ll probably be able to control myself To be fair I also want to point out that anti GMO zealots can be useful in their incorrectness since it seems reasonable that private enterprises engaged in genetic manipulation can be expected to engage in safety be damned corner cutting in pursuit of the largest return for their shareholders so should be watched over by as many people as possible with a heartfelt adversarial relationship to the processAnyway I think I can hold it together at the book club in the face of opinions I disagree with because I am after all an adult at least physically I just shut my eyes and envision myself lying down in cool grass on a summer afternoon or alternately maybe buying and preparing chicken from Ottomanelli s in Greenwich Village both of which visions have historically produced a calm happy feeling in moments of stressSo in summary I think this book did I mention that at this writing the Kindle e book is only 499 and used copies can be obtained for a mere 25 cents will hit the sweet spot for the book club in terms of length entertainment value and discussion potential after which I can go back to my usual practice which is studiously refusing to meet the gaze of anyone ever who asks for volunteers

  • Hardcover
  • 281
  • Banana The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World
  • Dan Koeppel
  • English
  • 14 June 2019
  • 9781594630385