A History of the World in 6 Glasses



[Epub] ❧ A History of the World in 6 Glasses Author Tom Standage – E17streets4all.co.uk Throughout human history certain drinks have done much than just uench thirst As Tom Standage relates with authority and charm six of them have had a surprisingly pervasive influence on the course of Throughout human history of the eBook ´ certain drinks have done much than just uench 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 Glasses tells the story of humanity from the Stone Age to the A History Kindle - st century through the lens of beer wine spirits coffee tea and cola Beer was first made in the Fertile Crescent and by BCE 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 History of the PDF º fueled the Age of Exploration fortifying seamen on long History of the World in PDF/EPUB or 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 History of the World in PDF/EPUB or foreign policy Finally though carbonated drinks were invented in th century Europe they became a th century phenomenon and Coca Cola in particular is the leading symbol of globalizationFor 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.A History of the World in 6 Glasses

Tom Standage is of the eBook ´ a journalist and author from England A graduate of Oxford University he has worked as a science and technology writer for The Guardian as the business editor at The Economist has been published in Wired The New York Times and The Daily Telegraph and has published five books including The Victorian Internet This book explores the historical development of A History Kindle - the telegrap.

A History of the World in 6 Glasses ePUB Ö of the
  • Paperback
  • 336 pages
  • A History of the World in 6 Glasses
  • Tom Standage
  • English
  • 03 October 2014
  • 9780802715524

10 thoughts on “A History of the World in 6 Glasses

  1. says:

    This book should really be called A History of the Western World in 6 Glasses as it doesn't consider the drinks of South America Sub Saharan Africa Oceania and much of Asia Indeed tea is considered only through the lens of the British empire even though the formal Japanese tea service is arguably interesting than a British tea party Even as a Western history it kind of fails as there's a large gap between wine production in the Roman empire and the distillation of rum in Barbados This can only be viewed as a surface history of the world but as far as surface stories go it's pretty interestingThroughout the book Standage tells the history of six beverages beer wine spirits coffee tea and Coca Cola as they appeared in the historical record 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 Instead of bringing it all back together in the epilogue he just rambles on about bottled water and randomly colonizing MarsThe book also contains a shockingly uncritical depiction of the Coca Cola company which creatives a beverage that can best be described as a noxious substance that no one should be consuming especially not on a regular basis Unfortunately the health effects of soda are not discussedI'd recommend A History of the World in 6 Glasses only to those interested in culinary history and esoterica History buffs and general readers should skip this one

  2. says:

    A well written book is sure to uench the thirst of a curious reader full of facts or action that keeps them coming back for But how did people throughout history uench their literal thirst and how do the beverage choices made throughout history help define the advancements the world has seen since its inception? Tom Standage seeks to answer these and many other uestions as he examines how six beverages beer wine spirits coffee tea and Coca Cola help to explain global advancements since humans first inhabited the earth Standage takes readers as far back as possible to explore how beer could have influenced history so completely A combination of water and cereal grains beer was an accidental discovery that exemplifies the sedentary nature of humans Crops took time to grow and reuired people to stay in one place for a period of time The fermentation process also took a period to develop which reuired people not to roam freely across the land Beer could be made and consumed by anyone which differed greatly from wine More of a high class beverage wine was much complex to make and costly to consume As Standage explains it was developed by the Romans and Athenians who modified it and created lavish drinking parties around its consumption Standage also argues that wine helped propel Christianity around the world as the beverage is at the heart of the religion’s central symbolic theme of the Blood of Christ Moving from simple fermentation to a complex system called distillation spirits came onto the scene and served to propel the world ahead even With use of scientific brewing and the addition of sugar to help the naturally impeded yeasts found in fruits or grains spirits were a complex and fiery beverage The need for sugars helped to foster its cultivation which was back breaking work What better way to have sugar harvested than through the use of slaves which Standage explains helped bring spirits to the New World Caribbean sugar cane was cultivated by African slaves creating a tumultuous time in history to facilitate the creation of many new and interesting beverages An eually popular drink in the form of coffee emerged which created an enlightenment of sorts Coffee became the drink of academics and the intellectual as they would gather to discuss their ideas at coffee houses well in the night The fostering of discussions much as wine had done for the Romans and Athenians came from coffee and to this day the correlation between the beverage and higher understanding is accepted Tea on the other hand proved not only to be a drink that brought about medicinal properties but helped Britain cement its power in the world While the British Empire gained in importance the British East India Company developed a worldwide supply of tea and marketed it as best as possible This power remained strong for centuries as the British remained at its centre However all good things must be replaced with something else leaving Coca Cola to move from a pharmaceutical remedy to the drink of America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries Its production skyrocketed and was soon symbolic of America which developed into freedom before long American troops all over the world sought the beverage and wherever the US military found itself freedom was said to be as well Standage talks at length about the Soviet push back against Coca Cola though the Iron Curtain was no match for the power of the mighty soda pop In a book that leaves the reader’s head spinning as they reach for their beverage of choice one can only wonder what the next big drink will be and how its impact will shape the future Standage posits his guess in the epilogue but you’ll have to read to find out Recommended to those who love history told through a uniue lens as well as the reader who loves to learn as they are entertainedI uite enjoy looking at history and world events through unorthodox means particularly when I had not thought to do so myself Tom Standage does a masterful job at creating this perspective and fills this book with a great deal of information that can be interpreted in many ways While I only skimmed the surface of his discussions in the paragraph above the fact that six mere beverages can truly tell so much about how humans have evolved over time is amazing Standage uses concrete examples to substantiate his arguments and keeps the discussion interesting at all turns He has little concern about offending as he speaks openly and frankly at every turn His attention to detail is like few other books I have read in the past and the fact that topics flow so easily makes the book even interesting With twelve strong chapters two on each beverage Standage explores the history of the beverage and then discusses its social political and economic impact on the world This permits the reader to better understand his arguments and almost demands taking a step back to see how the pieces all come together I am pleasantly surprised about how ensconced I was with the arguments presented and can only hope that his other works on the subject of world history are just as captivating Now then I need a Guinness to synthesise some of what I read or maybe a dark roast coffee no a strong tea Well while I decide go find this book and see what you think for yourselfKudos Mr Standage for an amazing read I can only hope other adventurous readers take the time and enjoy this as much as I haveLovehate the review? An ever growing collection of others appears at Book for All Seasons a different sort of Book Challenge

  3. says:

    An interesting and engaging way to learn about history I found it fascinating Will look on these beverages through new lenses now

  4. says:

    I seem to be in a phase where I like books that show me the hidden life of the everyday things all around us especially food and drink A few years ago I read Heat An Amateur's Adventures as Kitchen Slave Line Cook Pasta Maker and Apprentice to a Dante uoting Butcher in Tuscany by Bill Buford which started me on this uest which was followed by several books including The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan Most recently I read The Search for God and Guinness by Stephen MansfieldNow I've finished A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage which connects the span of human history to 6 different beverages that affected history culturally politically anthropologically nutritionally and economically The six in rough order of their era of greatest influence are beer wine whiskey coffee tea and cola More broadly you could have called the book A History of the World in Two Brain Altering Chemicals Alcohol and CaffeineIt is a fascinating look at how these drinks sometimes have been responsible for pivotal moments in history causing one civilization to rise and another to fall While human affairs are much complicated than one factor can explain we can't deny that one of the reasons ancient tribes turned from peripatetic hunting gathering to stationary agriculture was the need to cultivate grains for beer for instance Standage points out that of course the grains were also used for bread too but bread and beer were nearly interchangeable in most places two phases of cooking of the same product Beer was liuid bread and bread was solid beerMost the drinks had origins or at least early primary uses in religious rituals especially beer wine coffee and tea Whiskey and cola which were much modern inventions were just consumer products Eventually all of them made the leap to common use What made them significant was their eventual ubiuity even if at first they were reserved to the elitesThere were also some very interesting anecdotes such as the story of how coffee came to Europe from the Middle East Some theologians rejected it as a Muslim invention thus of the devil while others embraced So a decision had to be madeShortly before his death in 1605 Pope Clement VIII was asked to state the Catholic church's position on coffee At the time the drink was a novelty little known in Europe except among botanists and medical men including those at the University of Padua a leading center for medical research Coffee's religious opponents argued that coffee was evil They contended that since Muslims were unable to drink wine the holy drink of Christians the devil had punished them with coffee instead But the pope had the final say A Venetian merchant provided a small sample for inspection and Clement decided to taste the new drink before making his decision The story goes that he was so enchanted by its taste and aroma that he approved its consumption by ChristiansOther sources claim he said This devil's drink is so deliciouswe should cheat the devil by baptizing it True or not I will be sure to thank Pope Clement VIII and pray for him every day over my morning cup of joeAnother interesting tidbit concerned the importance of tea to the Industrial Revolution in Britain in the 18th and 19th century As labor became less about individual craftsmen and about unskilled workers who could maintain machines in monotonous repitition over long hours tea and tea breaks helped them to remain alert and concentrate Likewise even as the factory workers were gathering together in closer working and living conditions waterborne illnesses became almost extinct not just due to the boiling of water for tea but for the phenolic acids the tannins in the tea itselfInfants benefited too since the antibacterial phenolics in tea pass easily into the breast milk of nursing mothers This lowered infant mortality and provided a large labor pool just as the Industrial Revolution took holdIn fact every one of the six drinks was considered for both their positive and negative effects on society Coffee led to 16th century coffeehouses that were the locus of the Scientific Revolution that led to the Enlightenment democracy free market economics and The Chinese stranglehold on tea production and insistence on Westerners buying it with silver not trading it for Western goods led to the creation of the opium trade from India that eventually destabilized China in the 19th century which last through the 20th century until the rise of CommunismWhile these six beverages can't be said to have caused the most important and decisive moments of history they often played significant roles in moments that caused the course of history to go in one direction and not the other If not for the wine it exported would Greece have risen to a great culture that brought us philosophy and so much else?Without tea or rumwhiskey would Great Britain have become the empire on whose flag the sun never sets? Maybe maybe in a different form or in a different time but undoubtedly differentA History of the World in Six Glasses was a fun and uick read that makes me want to delve into the various individual elements it presents Which is the best kind of book isn't it?

  5. says:

    I noticed this book on a few friend's 'to read' lists and thought I should write a review on it since I have read it a few years back and it is still very much part of our family's proud intellectual history8 We do not realize how necessary fluids are for our survival As Tom Standage states we can live without food for uite a while but will die very soon of fluid deprivation In fact aren't we looking for water on Mars before we migrate there? Initially I did not plan to buy this book I was trying to find The Devil's Cup A History of the World According to Coffee by Stewart Lee Allen Tom Standage divided the history of the world into six periods each forming a different chapter in the book Beer in Mesopotamia and Egypt; Wine in Greece and Rome; Spirits in the Colonial Period; Coffee in the Age of Reason; Tea and the British empire; Coca Cola and the Rise of America Three are alcohol beverages and three caffeine 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 It is a sweet wine made in the Constantia region of South Africa which was popular in the 18th and 19th centuries In Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility the heroine is advised to drink it because of it's 'healing powers on a disappointed heart' Charles Dickens also mentions the wine referring in The Mystery of Edwin Drood to 'the support embodied in a glass of Constantia and a home made biscuit'There is perhaps a subtle unintentional humor buried in the amazing facts and the reader needs to concentrate It can cramp the reader's style a bit on the think tank So much so that I personally often fell asleep and had to reread everything in a new session which made it tedious in some instances But the facts are worth learning It certainly sheds a bright new light on world history The book is so laden with information that I found it too much to absorb in one sitting For instance the ancient old tea culture of the Chinese which was only discovered hundreds of years later by the Brits changed the latter's foreign policy forever; brandy and rum developed from the Arabian knowledge of chemistry inspired the age of Exploration; Greeks spread their influence through their exports of wine all over the worldThe book encourage thought Slavery wars and sanctions were often fueled by some of these beverages Reading it all in one book from Tom Standage's perspective turns these facts into eye openers For instance P 80 herbs honey and other additives were commonly added to lesser wines to conceal imperfections Some Romans even carried herbs and other flavorings with them while traveling to improve the taste of bad wineWhile modern wine drinkers may turn op their noses at the Greek and Roman use of additives it is not that different from the modern use of oak as flavoring agent often to make otherwise unremarkable wines palatableBelow these adulterated wines was posca a drink made by mixing water with wine that had turned sour and vinegarlike Posca was commonly issued to Roman soldiers when better wines were unavailable for exampleduring long campaigns It was in effect a form of portable water purification technology for the Roman army When a Roman soldier offered Jesus Christ a sponge dipped in wine during his crucifixion the wine in uestion would have been poscaThe location where you read the book does not matter What is important is that the information shared in the book ensures long relaxing discussion on a Sunday afternoon with friends and family It gives some mundane moments the meaningful memories it needs I initially gave it three stars only because it was not an easy read I really needed to keep all my ducks in a row for this one But in retrospect I changed my mind His research was excellent It is a good read for someone who wants to know how the development of chemistry from ancient times until now changed our world in an easy non scientific but factual read It is the only book I offer to guest to take to bed with them

  6. says:

    This book I've read twice It takes you from the formation of beer and society in Mesopotamia to the use of wine as currency and how wine types represented a social classification system in Greece and Rome It went through spirits and colonial time We only have whiskey because it took too long to ship scotch and brandy by wagon out west so we made corn whiskey To how coffee was at first banned in Muslim society and called black wine till they figured that it caused a different state of mind than actual alcohol To the use of tea as a way to stay hydrated in England the city was packed full and the water was not the cleanest Once coffee arrived in England there were coffee houses for men only because they were a place to smoke and talk politics while drinking coffee Women in England had tea gardens nice gardens where they could walk talk or sit and drink tea The book wrapped up in the time of just after WWII granting Coca Cola responsible as the first company to be globalized The factories were built in American forts during the war so that the soldier could have coca cola to drink when WWII was over the factories remained Then it dipped a bit to the Cold War as Coke played around with Invisible Coke and than landed at being Coca Cola Classic the original recipe minus the cocaine

  7. says:

    Excellent book about 6 drinks beer wine spirits coffee tea and Cola that impacted live of mankind through different ages

  8. says:

    An interesting way of breaking history up by beer wine whiskey coffee tea cola Each came into its own in our history may well have driven it in some ways The basic idea along with a thumbnail of each is laid out in the introduction pretty well Well enough that I didn't want to continue listening after about half the first section on beer I didn't care much for the narrator that wasn't helped by repetitious writing This would probably be a great book to read thoughIt's doubtful but I might get back to it at some point

  9. says:

    It is funny how we prefer certain aspects of books Another review here enjoyed the non alcoholic drinks better than the alcoholic drinks due to the amount of history and economics it covered but I found the alcohol drinks to be far interesting in depth and entertaining Overall I liked this book and learned a lot about how these drinks affected trade and became popular worldwide

  10. says:

    23 Feb 2015 I read this book since my son recommended it to me while he was reading it for his World History AP class this year I see why he liked it and I generally did too It is fun and breezy and covers some fascinating ground that is indeed important and grossly undercovered in most books or courses in historyHowever the book is a bit presumptuous in stating it is a “History of the World” or that the six drinks have “defined humankind’s past” Neither statement is totally true except in a very loose way but that should not stop one from reading itWhile refreshingly open to an objective view of history regarding capitalism free markets and property rights than many most? history books the author still promoted some completely foolish ideas by giving them eual or time vs sound ideas and factsThe author needs to explore the idea that all these beverages arewere in effect private not public or government created or owned His epilogue could have been far informed and informative on the subject of the modern situation of water issues If he had explored the crucial nature of privatization in man's need for a uality beverage that does not poison himher is of reasonable expense and is available to but not wasted by virtually everyoneThe definition of imperialism is likewise not one of the strong suits of the author His never defining it clearly but none the less using its corrupted meaning by communist ideology was very unhelpful He only tacitly used a definition that has twisted the word with pretzel logic to include non coercive private firms' actions but NOT include Soviet or other communist foreign aggression That is worse than just sad He is not as bad as many on this score since he also made fun of the various communist groups' ridiculous attacks on Coca Cola much to the detriment of their comrade citizens in the various countries he names But still being muddled on this important concept has significant repercussionsThere are other words incidents trends etc that the author could help the reader by not using or at least defining carefully ‘consumerism’ for one but I just state again the book has lots to recommend it and I enjoyed and learned a bunch from it overall It is well written fun and funny and I recommend it overall

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