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Mon, May. 4th, 2015, 10:04 pm

Mark Kurlansky - Cod

This book is not about cod as a species but cod as a source of food and trade. There are many cod and fish recipes (which I cannot use since I'm allergic to fish).

Most of the book is concerned about the economics of cod trade and what kind of effect it has had on history. And competition that in modern times has lead to extension of rights over international waters and conflicts like the Cod Wars between Iceland and Britain. As often is the case, trade interests may be more important than others - like the fact that abolitionists were still willing to sell cod to slave plantations in the Caribbean.

History of cod is of course history of fishing - and modern-time overfishing (in fact, the book begins with a description of troubles of modern-day fishermen). The book is from the late 1990s but as far as I know, the situation has not improved that much. And it is understandable that fisherman have to think that the fish are coming back soon. Otherwise their livelyhood is gone. For good.

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