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Item Title:

The Duchess Who Wouldn't Sit Down: An Informal History of


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Item Condition: New
Current Time:26 Jul 17 12:11:06
Time & Date displayed is forUnited States - EDT
Auction Closes:Learn more about Instant Buy

Quantity: (1 Available)
Price : £20.11 ($26.07)

Postage: £8.99 ($11.66)
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Item Specifics - Books ISBN : 1582342970
Author :
20.11 2644327 Title: The Duchess Who Wouldn t Sit Down: An Informal History of Hospitality Recommended Retail Price : 13.00 Our Price : 7.19 You Save : 5.81 (45% discount) ISBN : 1582342970 Author : Jesse Browner P
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Item Location: Leicester
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Title: The Duchess Who Wouldn't Sit Down: An Informal History of Hospitality

ISBN : 1582342970
Author : Jesse Browner
Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Media : Hardcover
SKU MIX6-U6-119C-ACD6-8739


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From Publishers Weekly&newline;&newline;Like an artfully served canapé, Browner's brief exploration of hospitality may seem light, but has a rich, lingering flavor. He works backward through time, beginning with Adolf Hitler's quirky type of hospitality at his retreat, at which every guest room had a copy of Mein Kampf and French pornography books on the bedside table. From there, novelist Browner (Conglomeros; Turnaway) wanders into the realm of Gertrude Stein, John James Audubon and Louis XIV, whose court witnessed the humiliation of a duchess who wouldn't sit because she was offered a stool instead of a chair. The book also explores Rome's Julio-Claudian dynasty and the rough days of Agamemnon's army. Browner plumbs these historical periods for hospitality anecdotes and finds some pearls, proving the host-and-guest relationship has never been particularly carefree. While directing the conversation, Browner proves an excellent host himself, throwing out delicious bons mots and peppering the work with personal details. Excursions into his daughter's teddy bear teas and his own propensity for weakening his poker buddies' resolve with homemade sandwiches give the book a sense of coherence and smooth charm. By the time he devotes an entire chapter to his family's Thanksgiving dinner, it's easy to see how his analysis of hospitality through the ages has shaped the event. He writes, &doublequote;When I am a good host, I can order the world precisely as I believe it ought to be.&doublequote; It's no effort to delight in the fact that Browner is also a good storyteller, and the way he orders the world here is an invitation worth answering.&newline;Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.&newline;&newline;&newline;From Booklist&newline;&newline;When it comes to the act of entertaining, there's making do, and then there's doing more. Long held to be the epitome of no-strings selflessness, true hospitality may become an endangered ideal in an increasingly jaded culture. Viewing such cynicism from an erudite historical perspective, Browner asserts that hospitality has always been about satisfying the needs of the host versus the wants of the guest, though such self-indulgence is not meant to be pejorative. From Epicurus to Audubon, Hitler to Huxley, Browner serves up arcane references to support his hypothesis, tracing the roots of contemporary society's angst to ancient Greek rituals, for instance. Throughout, he uncovers the scholarly precepts for the conventions of polite society, citing Nero's egotistical excesses or Gertrude Stein's celebrated salons to illustrate what works and what doesn't when it comes to interpersonal interactions. Lyrically recounting a family gathering shortly after the 9/11 tragedies, Browner's impassioned eloquence and sardonic understatement present a fascinating and factual study of the fine art of being friendly. Carol Haggas&newline;Copyright ® American Library Association. All rights reserved

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