Am reading 6000 years of bread - very sobering
I am a history buff and a bread freak so when I found out about 6000 years of bread I ordered it immediately.
Every once in a while I am fortunate enough to read a book that radically changes my world view and this was one of them. The author is clearly a man of his time and makes some assumptions that any modern reader would find silly. All that said this book has blown my mind.
For my whole life I felt that our culture had become so removed from agrarian life that we had become recently stupid about our food. The use of dangerous pesticides and badly genetically modified crops seemed like the act of a supermarket society out of touch with basic farming principles.
Now I know that agrarian stupidity has raised its big dumb hungry head for thousands of years. Precious knowledge about plowing, crop rotation and problems like ergot have been found and lost repeatedly over the ages. Thousands and thousands of people have perished needlessly and in the most horrible fashion.
Those that labored to produce food were all vilified and persecuted. Many of the wars that plagued our ancestors could have been prevented with a little agrarian knowledge. All of those wars were ultimately won by whoever had the most bread.
It is a wonder the human race has survived at all.