The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of

The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food If you think McDonald s is the most ubiquitous restaurant experience in America, consider that there are Chinese restaurants in America than McDonalds, Burger Kings, and Wendys combined New York Times reporter and Chinese American or American born Chinese , JenniferLee, traces the history of Chinese American experience through the lens of the food In a compelling blend of sociology and history, Jenny Lee exposes the indentured servitude Chinese restaurants expect from illegal immigrant chefs, investigates the relationship between Jews and Chinese food, and weaves a personal narrative about her own relationship with Chinese food The Fortune Cookie Chronicles speaks to the immigrant experience as a whole, and the way it has shaped our country Not as much info on egg foo young as I d like just kidding but this casual cultural history of American Chinese food offered entertaining insights not only into the origins often American of dishes like chop suey and general tso s chicken but into the life of Chinese immigrants in general and Chinese immigrant restaurant owners in particular not an easy life especially for the kids The author travels all over the world from small town China to small town Georgia to try to better under Not as much info on egg foo young as I d like just kidding but this casual cultural history of American Chinese food offered entertaining insights not only into the origins often American of dishes like chop suey and general tso s chicken but into the life of Chinese immigrants in general and Chinese immigrant restaurant owners in particular not an easy life especially for the kids The author travels all over the world from small town China to small town Georgia to try to better understand her our food and culture, producing some easily digestible nuggets geddit about the orgin of fortune cookies yes, they re really Japanese and the reason why Jews eat at Chinese restaurants on Christian holidays Although this won t be a draw for many, I got a particular kick out of the odd fact that the book begins and ends in Des Moines at a chop suey joint I ve never dared to enter but feel that I now must This is a very tasty book Jennifer 8 Lee is a first generation Chinese American who became obsessed with the interface between Chinese restaurants and American culture after learning that over 100 people had gotten five out of six winning Powerball numbers by playing the lucky numbers that came with their fortune cookies Her obsession has resulted in a delightful cultural history with a tiny bit of personal memoir thrown in.Before reading this book, I had no idea that there are twice as many C This is a very tasty book Jennifer 8 Lee is a first generation Chinese American who became obsessed with the interface between Chinese restaurants and American culture after learning that over 100 people had gotten five out of six winning Powerball numbers by playing the lucky numbers that came with their fortune cookies Her obsession has resulted in a delightful cultural history with a tiny bit of personal memoir thrown in.Before reading this book, I had no idea that there are twice as many Chinese restaurants in America as McDonald s, that chop suey is a wholly American dish, and there are serious claims that the Japanese actually invented the fortune cookie In chapters with titles like The Greatest Culinary Joke Played by One Culture On Another, and The Kosher Duck Scandal of 1989, Lee offers up a fascinating buffet of information about the widespread cultural impact of this ubiquitous industry Though much of this book is lighthearted in tone, there are a couple of chapters addressing the very real hazards faced by those who pay upwards of 70,000 to human smugglers for the privilege of cooking chow mien in America A story of the tragedy that befell one family when the clash of cultures proved too much for them to bear is terribly sad, and her discussion of the high mortality rate of Chinese deliverymen in New York is sobering Despite these heavier sections of the book, however, Lee makes it clear that the Chinese restaurant has been a very good phenomenon for both the workers who depend on them for their livelihood and the Americans who count on them for tasty, semi healthy food Lee is a talented writer, and while reading the book I had that lovely experience of both learning a great deal and being highly entertained I must warn you, however, that this book will without a doubt make you very, very hungry for Chinese food The basic premise behind this book is an interesting one using American Chinese cuisine as an object lesson, Jennifer 8 Lee wants to show that Chinese ness is a cultural value that can fuse with almost any other culture and yet still remain distinctively Chinese Unfortunately, the book is terribly edited It s at least 100 pages too long, repetitive, and poorly organized She ends the book two full chapters before it actually ends, which makes the final 30 or so pages of the book feel utterly The basic premise behind this book is an interesting one using American Chinese cuisine as an object lesson, Jennifer 8 Lee wants to show that Chinese ness is a cultural value that can fuse with almost any other culture and yet still remain distinctively Chinese Unfortunately, the book is terribly edited It s at least 100 pages too long, repetitive, and poorly organized She ends the book two full chapters before it actually ends, which makes the final 30 or so pages of the book feel utterly extraneous Lee is a fine writer and clearly has a personal investment in the topic, but the editors needed to help her decide if she was writing a cultural history or a memoir Right now, the book suffers from a lack of this distinction NOPE This book was all over Badly edited, poorly written and a total waste for 3 hours of my life, when I finally closed the damn book for good Bad, just plain bad.

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