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The Poetry of Everyday LifeStorytelling and the Art of Awareness$
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Steve Zeitlin

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781501702358

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501702358.001.0001

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Poetry of the Palate

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The Poetry of Everyday Life

Steve Zeitlin

Cornell University Press

This chapter reflects on the poetry of the palate, which it says is part of our palette of personal and cultural expressions. Tasting your favorite dish and hearing your favorite poem both have aesthetic qualities that make part of the poetry of everyday life. A language of tastes from immigrants' home countries is a marketable currency—and it adds not only flavors but also delicious words to our English vocabulary. Two books by Mark Kurlansky, Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World and Salt: A World History, make the case that the entire history of the world can be told through a single food. Foodways can provide a lens through which to explore geography and cultural history. In New York, world history, immigrant history, and shifting demographics create an ever-changing range of eateries and restaurants offering a panoply of tastes, often concocting new flavors by mixing ingredients.

Keywords:   poetry, palate, tastes, immigrants, food, foodways, geography, cultural history, New York, restaurants

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