The World In Six Glasses Chapter Summaries

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In John Standage’s book, A History of the World in Six Glasses, the history of the world is told through the history of six beverages; beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea, and Coca Cola. The effect that each has had on the world is profound and immeasurable, however, of the six beverages, I have found that coffee has played the largest and most significant role in world history.

One way that coffee affected world history is that establishments that served coffee created a social venue for members of the community to bond over various topics. Standage wrote that coffeehouses were hotspots for “gossip, rumor, political debate, and satirical discussion.”, similar to what they are in the present day. These topics led to Kha’ir Beg, ruler of Egypt, as well as his superiors worrying about coffeehouses being a popular meeting place for those wishing to overthrow the government. Also, coffeehouses were "popular venues for chess and backgammon”, which were often regarded as “morally dubious”. These activities and conversation topics may have given coffeeshops an
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The caffeine found in coffee helped “scientists, intellectuals, merchants, and clerks” feel energized, “alert”, and “stimulated” at the beginning of the day and at the end of the night, allowing for more discoveries to be made and for more tasks to be accomplished. This led to coffee replacing beer as the morning drink of choice, as the general public preferred feeling energized, “alert”, and “stimulated” to feeling intoxicated and tired. The coffeehouse culture also possessed an intellectual and calm vibe, which still prevails today, that promoted scientific discoveries such as heliocentrism, the belief that the sun is the center of our universe, as well as the laws of physics. Coffeehouses were centers for not only the gossip and gaming mentioned in the previous paragraph, but also for several scientific

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