A History of the World in 6 Glasses
by: Tom Standage
|Photo courtesy of http://tomstandage.wordpress.com|
The basic idea is to follow 6 of the most influential beverages in human history looking at what they made possible and how they shape our lives. It has the feel of The Botany of Desire which was a book about 4 of the most influential plants in human history. The drinks that are detailed are beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea and cola. There is also an epilogue about water that is probably the most interesting section. An example is how beer became a way to store grain and basically became a form of currency for early civilizations. Egyptians that built the pyramids were paid in beer. In fact it might have been the reason that civilization was possible (conjecture and opinion but it is interesting to think about). This book is a bit egocentric in the sense that it looks at history through the lens of these drinks and so makes a history that is centered around the drinks... The author backs up his thoughts with facts and historical sources but I can't help thinking that he was just choosing sources that meet his needs. Interesting and a quick read. So go browse your local library and find something fun or go there specifically for this book.