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Clean By Katherine Ashenburg

Clean

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Investigates history's ambivalence towards personal hygiene. From the bizarre prescriptions of doctors to the eccentricities of famous bathers, this book presents us with the twists and turns that have led us to our own, arbitrary notion of 'clean'.
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Clean Summary


Clean: An Unsanitised History of Washing by Katherine Ashenburg

'I return to Paris in five days. Stop washing.' So wrote Napoleon to Josephine in an age when body odour was considered an aphrodisiac. In stark contrast, the Romans used to bath for hours each day. Ashenburg's investigation of history's ambivalence towards personal hygiene takes her through plague-ridden streets, hospitals and battlefields. From the bizarre prescriptions of doctors to the eccentricities of famous bathers, she presents us with all the twists and turns that have led us to our own, arbitrary notion of 'clean'.

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Clean Reviews


The only possible complaint about Ashenburg's exceptionally enjoyable book is that, being beautifully designed and illustrated, it is not suitable for reading in the bath -- John Carey * The Sunday Times *
Thought provoking, charming and great fodder for dinner-party chat, this is a memorable read * Time Out *
This is a sparkling, discursive and witty history: good, clean fun -- Cressida Connolly * New Statesman *
[T]errific history of personal hygiene ... A wonderfully interesting and amusing book * Daily Mail *
Here is a splendid history of the amazingly different attitudes that various civilisations have taken towards water -- Nicholas Bagnall * Sunday Telegraph *
Awash with smart allusions...absorbing on Roman water-heating or Victorian soap, this finely-illustrated survey turns on a foaming jacuzzi for the mind -- Boyd Tonkin * The Independent *
An entertaining book that really does belong in the bathroom -- Claire Allfree * Metro *
Clean takes you on a fast-paced journey that confronts our own obsession with cleanliness, gives insight into cultural differences and charts the wonderful history of human hygine. It's a refreshing home spa for the brain. * Elle Decoration Magazine, South Africa *

About Katherine Ashenburg


Katherine Ashenburg has worked as an academic, a radio producer and Arts and Books editor of the Globe and Mail. She has written for the New York Times and her books include The Mourner's Dance: What We Do When People Die. She lives in Toronto.

Additional information

GOR001293218
Clean: An Unsanitised History of Washing by Katherine Ashenburg
Katherine Ashenburg
Used - Very Good
Paperback
Profile Books Ltd
2009-03-19
368
1846681014
9781846681011
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.