A History of the World in 6 Glasses
From beer to Coca-Cola, the six drinks that have helped shape human history Throughout human history, certain drinks have done much more than just quench thirst. As Tom Standage relates with authority and charm, six of them have had a surprisingly pervasive influence on the course of history,... show more
From beer to Coca-Cola, the six drinks that have helped shape human history Throughout human history, certain drinks have done much more than just quench thirst. As Tom Standage relates with authority and charm, six of them have had a surprisingly pervasive influence on the course of history, becoming the defining drink during a pivotal historical period. A History of the World in 6 Glasses tells the story of humanity from the Stone Age to the 21st century through the lens of beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea, and cola. Beer was first made in the Fertile Crescent and by 3000 B.C.E. was so important to Mesopotamia and Egypt that it was used to pay wages. In ancient Greece wine became the main export of her vast seaborne trade, helping spread Greek culture abroad. Spirits such as brandy and rum fueled the Age of Exploration, fortifying seamen on long voyages and oiling the pernicious slave trade. Although coffee originated in the Arab world, it stoked revolutionary thought in Europe during the Age of Reason, when coffeehouses became centers of intellectual exchange. And hundreds of years after the Chinese began drinking tea, it became especially popular in Britain, with far-reaching effects on British foreign policy. Finally, though carbonated drinks were invented in 18th-century Europe they became a 20th-century phenomenon, and Coca-Cola in particular is the leading symbol of globalization.For Tom Standage, each drink is a kind of technology, a catalyst for advancing culture by which he demonstrates the intricate interplay of different civilizations. You may never look at your favorite drink the same way again.
Publish date: May 26th 2009
Publisher: Walker & Company
Pages no: 320
Edition language: English
, Food And Drink
, Book Club
, World History
, Food History
The author provides an interesting perspective on the influence that various drinks had on civilization, culture and the spread of ideas and empires from the Stone Age to the 21st Century. He starts of with beer in Mesopotamia and Egypt; progresses to wine in Greece and Rome; then the concoction an...
This book discusses the rise of six drinks as alternatives to water and some of it was actually rather interesting. Some of it was known to me, of course, but the couple of chapters for each drink gave a nice overview and I did learn a few things. I shouldn't have to praise this but no physical desc...
by Tom Standage Non-fiction This is a fascinating book that covers the effects that six significant beverages have had on the shaping of history; beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea and cola. I had already known about the ancient origins of beer, but learning that wine was originally distilled by...
What an awesome book, a fascinating perspective on history. This is the kind of book that had me constantly badgering my husband to listen to the dozen cool new things I just learned from that day's chapter. Standage told a coherent history from hunter gatherer times to modern day, and it didn't f...
#3 on the histories of everyday objects list, Standage's overview of beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea, and cola succeeds in what is actually a sort of difficult writing exercise--finding the special in the mundane, in one sense; and showing how everyday objects impacted history. the book is not perf...