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A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom…
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A History of the World in 6 Glasses (original 2005; edition 2006)

by Tom Standage

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2,714885,326 (3.76)146
History. Nonfiction. HTML:

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.

.
… (more)
Member:kevitos96
Title:A History of the World in 6 Glasses
Authors:Tom Standage
Info:Walker Publishing Company (2006), Paperback, 311 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:
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A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom STANDAGE (Author) (2005)

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» See also 146 mentions

English (85)  Spanish (2)  French (1)  All languages (88)
Showing 1-5 of 85 (next | show all)
I've never enjoyed history. Names and dates are lost on me, and I struggle to keep everything straight when I'm reading about it. Not so with this book. Standage does a fantastic job of weaving six drinks - beer, wine, run (spirits), coffee, tea, and Coca-Cola - into the major times of human development. Sure, there is a lot of speculation, but the discussion of how each drink impacted culture and habits was enough to keep me turning the pages. ( )
  ohheybrian | Dec 29, 2023 |
The effect of liquor, tea and other liquids on various aspects of society over time. ( )
  mykl-s | Aug 11, 2023 |
Full disclosure: I skipped the chapters about spirits and tea because I had fairly recently read books that covered these topics, and I had no interest in rehashing those histories. Also, I skipped the chapter on soft drinks because I have zero interest in that type of beverage.

So I read about beer, wine, coffee, and of course the epilogue. And it was great! Every part was short and snappy, drawing clear lines between the beverages and the historical events; nothing seemed forced in from left field, and none of it was so detailed that I lost the narrative. It's the type of non-fiction book that you can read at the end of a long day and still find it relaxing. My favorite chapter was about coffee because the coffeehouses sound like a lot of fun. I'm going to try to track down "Penny Universities" to read more on these establishments, per the author's suggestion in the notes. ( )
  blueskygreentrees | Jul 30, 2023 |
Lots of great information on the origins of the six beverages: beer, wine, whisky, coffee, tea, and Coca-Cola (with a nod to Pepsi). Modest explanations of how the beverages were distributed throughout the world. Would have enjoyed more detail, and while not offered here, could probably be found in the listed source material.
Recommended. ( )
  MugsyNoir | Jul 19, 2023 |
A short, fascinating read. It’s an intriguing framework to put the history of civilization alongside the development of humankind’s most significant drinks. ( )
  bobbybslax | Jun 27, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 85 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
STANDAGE, TomAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Runnette, SeanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Thirst is deadlier than hunger.
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History. Nonfiction. HTML:

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.

.

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Book description
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 different 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 beverage the same way again.

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