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Strasser retrieves what history discards the taken for granted minutiae of the everyday life of ordinary people naomi bliven the new yorker susan strasser reads our american history in our tea leaves and countless tons of other domestic garbage as she traces the changing meanings of waste and thrift from colonial times to the present. Susan strassers 1999 waste and want a social history of trash could have been titled america trash a love story the book focuses on americas relationship to trash sometimes with love and sometimes with abuse. A social history of trash by susan strasser metropolitan books dont ye know that wilful waste makes woful want a more typical cook herrick warned would not bother to alert the mistress rather will she think that its an ill wind that blows nobody good and quietly appropriate cold vegetables and broken meats for the benefit of her . Lively and colorful waste and want recaptures a hidden part of our social history vividly illustrating that what counts as trash depends on whos counting and that what we throw away defines us as much as what we keep. Waste and want a social history of trash is part of the welcome shift that has occurred over the past few decades away from history as grand drama of prominent personages and events to