French coffeehouses also emphasized the contradiction that even with the advances of the Enlightenment, progress in the social and political spheres had been stopped by the dead hand of the ancient regime. Coffee was discovered in Arabia, where some people tried to ban it as an intoxicant for its mental effects. Tom Standage is a writer for The Economist, and this book, A History of the World in 6 glasses, reads well. Still, overall, well worth the read, and it's certainly made me curious about a lot of aspects of history that I'd never even contemplated before. The human consumption of animal milk, for example, is an interesting story with important implications but we don't learn about that. In fact, aren't we looking for water on Mars before we migrate there? This is one such recommendation, based on the history kick I've been on for the past 2 or so years.
Throughout the first portion of the book, which focuses on beer, wine, and spirits, I was a bit bored, and found myself becoming frustrated at how repetitive Standage's writing could be. Britain no longer wanted to have to rely on China for their supply of tea. 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. See you at the barricades! Governments tried to suppress these institutions, since coffeehouses promoted freedom of speech and an open atmosphere for discussion amongst different classes of peopleãsomething many governments found threatening. It was inevitable that tea would spread to other cultures, the next being the Dutch. It explores world history from the point of view of the discovery and consumption of several key beverages: beer, wine, rum, coffee, tea and cola.
In A History of the World in 6 Glasses, Tom Standage wrote about six beverages: beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea, and Coca-Cola. As well as offering safer alternatives to contaminated, disease. Beer and wine both shared a social aspect in the world. But above all they were clearinghouses for news and gossip, linked by the circulation of customers, publications, and information from one establishment to the next. At a symposium, the drinkers could indulge in intellectual conversations, but they also enjoyed playing games and improvising poetry and music. Wine was the perfect symbol of Greek culture: intellectual and elitist, yet hedonistic. Better still is the book's ability to provide a possible narrative of world history.
It went for Refreshing, instead. Britain began to look for alternatives to China. Coke sought to increase soldier morale by supplying a familiar drink to them abroad. Eventually, all of them made the leap to common use. This is actually not so great, as the book ends up talking about beer without ever mentioning Germany, and wine without ever mentioning France or California.
This would probably be a great book to read, though. How was wine used by the Greeks? And spread to Europe despite horrors from occasional physicians. It was eliminated early in the twentieth century, though other extracts derived from coca leaves remain part of the drink to this day. For Tom Standage, each drink is a different kind of technology, a catalyst for advancing culture by which he demonstrates the intricate interplay of different civilizations. For the first five drinks, Standage made a fairly convincing argument that they did indeed change the course of human history, however CocaCola is used more as an example of the modern world, not a factor in creating it.
But the facts are worth learning! What they found was India. Instead of bringing it all back together in the epilogue, he just rambles on about bottled water and randomly colonizing Mars. And then the company began to raise tea in India, devastating the China tea trade, and contributing to China's instability. Beer was a big part of the development of domestication and agriculture, and he goes through how it probably developed and what customs still survive. A thoroughly enjoyable read, the book is full of those kinds of anecdotes and stories that help students to enjoy and remember history. As Tom Standage states, we can live without food for quite a while, but will die very soon of fluid deprivation.
The idea for the book came to Tom Standage 'while reading an article in my Sunday newspaper about a wine said to have been one of Napoleon's favourites during exile: Vin de Constance. I was still interested in the material of this half of the book, I just didn't find it particularly compelling. If interested in my book club set of notes and discussion questions, please go to. Tea also played a role in reducing waterborne diseases since the water had to be boiled first. With the fall of the Roman Empire, wine continued to be associated with Christianity and the Mediterranean. This, he argues, began the trade wars which resulted in the molasses act, the sugar act, the boycotts of imports, and a refusal to pay taxes without representation.
How did absolute monarchies change during the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries? 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. How might beer have influenced the transition from 2. The book is so laden with information that I found it too much to absorb in one sitting. This managed to both entertain and educate me, because with just the 6 drinks highlighted the author managed to create a brief history of civilisation as we know it. By itself, water was dirty and could spread disease—wine purified the water by killing bacteria. The title is a bit hyperbolic. It is the only book I offer to guest to take to bed with them! In the 1770s, tea smuggling into Britain was at its peak, which resulted to the Tea Act of 1773 which was a government loan of 1.