Monday, August 1


Launched in 2008 by Harper's editor emeritus Lewis Lapham, the history magazine Lapham's Quarterly has organized its issues around such themes as "Crimes of War," "Celebrity," and "Eros." The summer 2011 issue is dedicated to food, and it's not your grandpa's history digest. Reprinted selections span the ages from Ancient Greece to the ill-fated (and very hungry) Uruguayan rugby team whose plane crash-landed in the Andes in 1972. Jamestown colonist John Smith imagines "Such a Dish as Powdered Wife," and ex-slave Frederick Douglass reflects on the "Blood-Bought Luxuries" consumed in the big house. The issue includes several new essays as well.

A few of the stories are accessible from the magazine's website, but we recommend slipping a print copy in your beach bag. Intellectually, Lapham's food issue is several notches above paperback bestsellers—but it's still plenty juicy.