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Man Bites Dog: Hot Dog Culture in America (Rowman & Littlefield Studies in Food and Gastronomy) Hardcover – November 20, 2012

4.8 out of 5 stars 7 ratings

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Editorial Reviews


In this cleverly titled volume, Kraig takes a look at the American hot dog phenomenon, giving the history and folklore behind the foodstuff that became 'quintessential public dining treats—long before the rise of hamburgers—sold on streets, at fairs and festivals, at picnics (weenie roasts), and in fast food venues. . . .' Chapters on the simple pleasures of eating hot dogs and the numerous ways which they can be served pull readers back in. A fully loaded Chicago dog, for example, 'has mustard, bright green relish, chopped onions, tomato slices, pickle slices, and small sport peppers jammed onto the bun.' And currywurst, first popular in Germany, is 'covered in a sweet-hot sauce' and 'served on paper plates.' Photographer Carroll includes images of old-school hot dog stands and pushcarts, helping to illustrate this sometimes disturbing but always bright tribute to an American food classic. (Publishers Weekly)

Man Bites Dog looks to be a much deeper dive into the current state of hot dog culture in the United States. Definitely number one on my list this year. (Serious Eats)

Partnering with photographer Patty Carroll, the pair explore the hot dog’s place in our society from the metal carts so popular in New York City and Chicago to iconic restaurants like Pink’s famous Hot Dog in Los Angeles. (Gazette)

Digging into the love and lore behind an unassuming ballpark staple, they (Bruce Kraig and Patty Carroll) offer a guided tour of immigrant culture, gastronomic history and hot doggeries coast to coast. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

Among the constantly changing stack of books on my bedside table are a trio of volumes always there for their timeless inspiration. Now joining On the Road, John Adams, and the Bible is Man Bites Dog. For a wiener lover like myself, it truly is biblical—full of history, drama, and wonder. It is a joy to browse at leisure and a solid read front to back, endlessly informative as well as entertaining. This ambitious ode to the most American food of all bolsters one's faith in our nation's taste, which, however it gets politicized, industrialized, or sanitized, remains full of character and mischief.

(Michael Stern, Roadfood.com)

In Man Bites Dog, Bruce Kraig has taken us on a veritable Magical Mystery Meat Tour, replete with amusing arcana and delicious digressions on every page—with the possible exception of the many pages that pheature phantastic photos by Patty Carroll. Gimme one with everything. (Gary Allen, author of Sausage: A Global History)

As a hot dog fanatic, I devour any reading material whatsoever having to do with the subject of hot dogs. Man Bites Dog is the best and most comprehensive book about hot dogs, their regional styles, history, and culture, and the people who serve, make, and enjoy America's favorite food. I heartily recommend this book for the casual hot dog eater as well as the hardcore hot dog aficionado. (John Fox, hot dog expert)

About the Author

Bruce Kraig, professor emeritus at Roosevelt University, is a noted food historian and widely sought-after expert on the lore, allure, and culture of the hot dog. He is the top dog.

Patty Carroll, adjunct professor of photography at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, specializes in photographing American popular culture. Previous projects include Elvis impersonators; sleazy bars, motels, and restaurants at night; and American suburban lawns.

Product details

  • Item Weight : 1.86 pounds
  • Hardcover : 200 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0759120730
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0759120730
  • Dimensions : 9.19 x 0.63 x 9.9 inches
  • Publisher : AltaMira Press; First Edition (November 20, 2012)
  • Language: : English
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.8 out of 5 stars 7 ratings

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