Judith Newton’s “Tasting Home — Coming of Age in the Kitchen” published
If Julia Child had cooked Italian for a gay husband, used sugar to sweeten a sour childhood, and hosted buffets for a better world, she could have written ” Home: Coming of Age in the Kitchen.”
In this food memoir, Judith Newton shares the unforgettable story of a life on the front lines of activism and in the kitchen. Having discovered during a difficult childhood that food and cooking were sources of comfort and emotional sustenance, in the decades to come, through her marriage to a gay man, her discovery of feminism, her life in a commune, and her career in a university she learned how deeply food is tied to identity, love, community, and political engagement.
By turns moving, joyful, thoughtful, and wry “Tasting Home” takes us on a remarkable journey through the cuisines and cultural politics of the 1940s through the 2000s complete with recipes.
“… in this elegantly written work Newton manages to weave in the entire course of the culture, a reflection of her skills as an historian and an accomplished writer as well as a born storyteller.” — Jeanette Ferrary, author of “Out of the Kitchen: Adventures of a Food Writer and Between Friends: M.F.K. Fisher and Me”
“In this captivating memoir, Newton draws the reader into a world where major events are brought to life with poignant food memories. …Each vignette is pitch-perfect, lively, and engaging, striking a delicate balance between self-disclosure and universal themes of acceptance, love, community-building, and political engagement.” — Janet A. Flammang, author of “The Taste for Civilization: Food, Politics, and Civil Society”
“Tasting Home” is more than a food memoir. Influenced by the civil rights struggle, the women’s movement, and the AIDS epidemic, it is an odyssey of emotional, intellectual, and spiritual growth. Cooking serves as a powerful metaphor for the difficulties and pleasures of relations among mothers and daughters; husbands and wives; gays and heterosexuals; and racial-ethnic groups. “Tasting Home,” like a grand meal, is a resounding success.” — Belinda Robnett, author of ” Long? How Long? African-American Women in the Struggle for Civil Rights.”
“Creating a tapestry of the personal and political, this evocative memoir weaves together stories of family, friendship and community, of love, birth and death that span seven decades from the 1930’s to the end of the 20th century. Punctuated by favorite recipes for thoughtfully prepared meals, this vivid narrative celebrates matters of both the kitchen and the heart.” — Wendy Martin, author of “We Are The Stories We Tell” and “More Stories We Tell.”
About the Author
Judith Newton is Professor Emerita in Women and Gender Studies at U.C. Davis where she directed the Women and Gender Studies program and the Consortium for Women and Research.
She is the author and co-editor of five works of nonfiction on nineteenth-century British women writers, feminist criticism, women’s history, and men’s movements. Four of these works were reprinted by Routledge and the University of Michigan Press in the fall of 2012.
Her most current work has appeared in The Huffington Post (February 8, 2013), The Redwood Coast Review (Winter 2012), poetalk (Summer, 2011). In 2011 and 2012 six chapters of her memoir won prizes in contests sponsored by Women’s Memoir. She is currently at work on a feminist mystery and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area of California where she tends her garden and cooks for family and friends.
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