At home a short history of private life
At Home: A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson“Houses aren’t refuges from history. They are where history ends up.”
Bill Bryson and his family live in a Victorian parsonage in a part of England where nothing of any great significance has happened since the Romans decamped. Yet one day, he began to consider how very little he knew about the ordinary things of life as he found it in that comfortable home. To remedy this, he formed the idea of journeying about his house from room to room to “write a history of the world without leaving home.” The bathroom provides the occasion for a history of hygiene; the bedroom, sex, death, and sleep; the kitchen, nutrition and the spice trade; and so on, as Bryson shows how each has figured in the evolution of private life. Whatever happens in the world, he demonstrates, ends up in our house, in the paint and the pipes and the pillows and every item of furniture.
If Walls Could Talk
Sitting at his kitchen table one day, Bill Bryson wondered why, from a choice of hundreds of spices, we have settled on salt and pepper as our condiments of preference — why not salt and cardamom, he thought? For that matter, why do forks have four tines? They are where history ends up. Full disclosure: my own The Victorian House is similarly laid out and Bryson cites it with generous acknowledgement; it is not, however, nearly as funny as At Home. Damn it.
At Home: A Short History of Private Life [Bill Bryson] on chrissullivanministries.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. In these pages, the beloved Bill Bryson gives us a.
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A Short History of Private Life
The publishing industry often reflects this wish. Or he should have. Join this amiable tour guide as he wanders through his house, a former rectory built in in a tranquil English village. It is almost impossible to conceive just how much radical day-to-day change people were exposed to. Moving from room to room, talking while we walk, please notice that the backs of those antique parlor chairs are never upholstered. One relic of this is the short row of pointless buttons that are still placed on the underside of jacket sleeves near the cuff. A trip to the larder involves a discussion of the servant classes.
Look Inside. Oct 05, Minutes Buy. Oct 04, ISBN Oct 05, ISBN Oct 05, Minutes. In these pages, the beloved Bill Bryson gives us a fascinating history of the modern home, taking us on a room-by-room tour through his own house and using each room to explore the vast history of the domestic artifacts we take for granted. As he takes us through the history of our modern comforts, Bryson demonstrates that whatever happens in the world eventually ends up in our home, in the paint, the pipes, the pillows, and every item of furniture.
In the first chapter of At Home , Bill Bryson surveys his own home, an old Norfolk rectory, and considers the career of the young rector for whom it was built in He was, Bryson writes, one of "a class of well-educated, wealthy people who had immense amounts of time on their hands. In consequence, many of them began, quite spontaneously, to do remarkable things". He cites the examples of George Bayldon, whose services were so poorly attended he converted half his church into a hen-house, and Reverend George Garrett, who pioneered submarine design. They've disappeared now and country vicars are neither rich nor leisured, but Bryson is about as close to a modern equivalent as you can find. At Home has all the hallmarks of being written by someone with a certain sort of intellectual thirst, a lavish income and too much time on his hands, qualities that in our own age are more likely to be found not in clergymen, but bestselling authors. While Bryson's book purports to be about private life, it's really about whatever takes his fancy.