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Kurlansky at a Barnes & Noble book signing, New York City, July 11, 2013
Mark Kurlansky (December 7, 1948) is an American journalist and writer of general interest non-fiction. He has written a number of books of fiction and non-fiction. His 1997 book, Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World, (1997) was an international bestseller and was translated into more than 15 languages. His book Nonviolence: Twenty-five Lessons From the History of a Dangerous Idea (2006) was the non-fiction winner of the 2007 Dayton Literary Peace Prize.
Life and work
Kurlansky was born in Hartford, Connecticut on December 7, 1948. He attended Butler University, where he earned a BA in 1970. From1976-91 he worked as a correspondent in Western Europe for the Miami Herald, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and eventually the Paris-based International Herald Tribune. He moved to Mexico in 1982 where he continued to do journalism. In 2007 he was named the Baruch College Harman writer-in-residence.
He wrote his first book, A Continent of Islands, in 1992 and went on to write several books throughout the 1990s. His 1997 book Cod was an international bestseller and was translated into more than 15 languages. His work and contribution to Basque identity and culture was recognized in 2001 when the Society of Basque Studies in America named him to the Basque Hall of Fame. That same year he was made an honorary ambassadorship from the Basque government.
His 2009 book The Food of a Younger Land, details American foodways in the early 20th century, with the lengthy subtitle, "A portrait of American food – before the national highway system, before chain restaurants, and before frozen food, when the nation's food was seasonal, regional, and traditional – from the lost WPA files."
- A Continent of Islands: Searching for the Caribbean Destiny (1992), Addison-Wesley Publishing. ISBN 0-201-52396-5
- A Chosen Few: The Resurrection of European Jewry (1995), ISBN 0-201-60898-7
- Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World (1997), ISBN 0-8027-1326-2
- The Basque History of the World (1999), ISBN 0-8027-1349-1
- Salt: A World History (2002), ISBN 0-8027-1373-4
- 1968: The Year that Rocked the World (2004), ISBN 0-345-45581-9
- The Big Oyster: History on the Half Shell (2006), ISBN 0-345-47638-7
- Nonviolence: The History of a Dangerous Idea (2006), ISBN 978-0-224-07791-0
- Nonviolence: Twenty-five Lessons From the History of a Dangerous Idea (2006), ISBN 0-679-64335-4
- The Last Fish Tale: The Fate of the Atlantic and Survival in Gloucester, America's Oldest Fishing Port and Most Original Town (2008), ISBN 0-345-48727-3
- The Food of a Younger Land (2009), ISBN 1-59448-865-7
- The Eastern Stars: How Baseball Changed the Dominican Town of San Pedro de Macoris (2010), ISBN 1-59448-750-2
- World Without Fish (2011)
- What?: Are These the 20 Most Important Questions in Human History--Or Is This a Game of 20 Questions? (2011), ISBN 978-0-8027-7906-9
- Birdseye: The Adventures of a Curious Man (2012), ISBN 978-0-385-52705-7
- International Night: A Father and Daughter Cook Their Way Around the World (2014), ISBN 978-1-620-40027-2
- Paper: Paging Through History (2016), ISBN 978-0393239614
- The White Man in the Tree, and Other Stories (2000), ISBN 0-671-03605-X
- Boogaloo on 2nd Avenue: A Novel of Pastry, Guilt, and Music (2005), ISBN 0-345-44818-9
- Edible Stories: A Novel in Sixteen Parts (2010), ISBN 1-59448-488-0
- City Beasts: Fourteen Stories of Uninvited Wildlife (2015), ISBN 9781594485879
- The Cod's Tale, illustrated by S. D. Schindler (G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2001), ISBN 0-399-23476-4
- The Girl Who Swam to Euskadi (Reno, NV: Center for Basque Studies, 2005), ISBN 1-877802-54-9
- The Story of Salt, illus. S. D. Schindler (Putnam, 2006), ISBN 0-399-23998-7
- Battle Fatigue (Walker Books & Co., 2011), ISBN 978-0-8027-2264-5, young-adult historical novel, OCLC 704383968
- Frozen in Time: Clarence Birdseye's Outrageous Idea About Frozen Food (2014), ISBN 978-0-385-37244-2, 165 pp.
- Choice Cuts: A Savory Selection of Food Writing From Around the World and Throughout History (2002), ISBN 0-345-45710-2
- The Belly of Paris by Émile Zola, Mark Kurlansky as translator. The Modern Library, 2009. ISBN 978-0-8129-7422-5
- 1998: James A. Beard Award for excellence in food writing
- 2006: Bon Appetit Food Writer of the Year
- 2007: non-fiction winner of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize for Nonviolence: Twenty-five Lessons From the History of a Dangerous Idea (2006).
- 2007: honorary Doctor of Letters, Butler University
- 2011: Gold Award, National Parenting Publications Awards for World Without Fish
- Pluma Plata award for Salt
- "Contemporary Authors Online". Biography in Context. Gale. 2012. Retrieved January 13, 2016.
- "The Writers Directory". Biography in Context. Gale. 2015. Retrieved January 13, 2016.
- "A Conversation with Mark Kurlansky, translator of Zola’s Classic", conversation with Terrance Gelenter
- "Nonviolence: Twenty-five Lessons From the History of a Dangerous Idea, 2007 nonfiction winner"
- "Dayton Literary Peace Prize - Mark Kurlansky, 2007 Nonfiction Winner". www.daytonliterarypeaceprize.org. Retrieved 2016-01-13.