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According to the Greek creation myth, we are so much spilt milk; a splatter of the goddess Hera's breast milk became our galaxy, the Milky Way. But while mother's milk may be the essence of nourishment, it is the milk of other mammals that humans have cultivated ever since the domestication of animals more than 10,000 years ago, originally as a source of cheese, yogurt, kefir, and all manner of edible innovations that rendered lactose digestible, and then, when genetic mutation made some of us lactose-tolerant, milk itself.
Before the industrial revolution, it was common for families to keep dairy cows and produce their own milk. But during the 19th century mass production and urbanization made milk safety a leading issue of the day, with milk-borne illnesses a common cause of death. Pasteurization slowly became a legislative matter. And today milk is a test case in the most pressing issues in food politics, from industrial farming and animal rights to GMOs, the locavore movement and advocates for raw milk, who controversially reject pasteurization.
Profoundly intertwined with human civilization, milk has a compelling and a surprisingly global story to tell, and historian Mark Kurlansky is the perfect person to tell it. Tracing the liquid's diverse history from antiquity to the present, he details its curious and crucial role in cultural evolution, religion, nutrition, politics and economics.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Scarlatti's Muse on 05-15-18
Horrible narration nearly kills Kurlansky
I have been a fan of Mark Kurlansky for many years but this is the first audio book I've experienced. Brian Sutherland's narration is a colorless monotone which leads me to believe that he was thoroughly bored by the topic. With a different narrator, Milk! would have been a thrilling history but Sutherland makes it as interesting as reading a telephone directory. What a shame!
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
By Amazon Customer on 05-20-18
I'm generally a Krulansky fan, but...
I'm only on Chapter 5, but I've got to say, I'm disappointed. So far, way too many recipes, too little interesting information.
And the narrator... Not just the style, but I'm really worried about the pronunciation. I've read many times that, Boston Celtics notwithstanding, Celt is pronounced "Kelt", not "Selt". And that's just one of several questionable pronunciations I've encountered. Where are the editors here? I expect more of professional narration.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful