Drink: A Social History of America

Barr, Andrew

Verlag: Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2000
ISBN 10: 0786707437 / ISBN 13: 9780786707430
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Inhaltsangabe: In this shrewd cultural history of drink in America, Andrew Barr considers the significance of alcohol, historically and socially, symbolic and real, in the evolution of a nation born of a rebel spirit and intoxicated by liberty - and sometimes by rum or raw whiskey, which the colonists preferred to their royally taxed British tea. While Americans have both asserted and celebrated their freedoms with alcohol they have also, in Barr's perceptive historical view, put it to more insidious use; in suppressing native American populations in the country's expansion west, for instance, or in controlling acculturation of immigrants. Blending his candidly opinionated take on history with a lively bit of cultural anthropology, Barr examines not only the social influences that determine what, where, and why we choose to drink but also the social ills that have been attributed to alcohol, from the supposed decline in national values to the dipsomaniacal state of our national health. Barr argues, however, that the scapegoating of alcohol by moral alarmists, the medical establishment, and platform politicians has more often produced dubious cures and moral hypocrisy than it has accomplished social good.

Rezension:

"It is not generally appreciated how extreme American attitudes about alcohol appear from the other side of the Atlantic."

With an opening line such as that, it's not surprising that Drink: A Social History of America engages in its share of Yankee-bashing. British journalist Andrew Barr's look at American culture through a glass (somewhat blearily) is an attempt "to understand the history of the United States through its attitudes to liquor and its changing tastes in drink." In reality, however, Barr lurches and staggers from topic to topic--from prohibition to martinis to ice to air conditioning to bland American beer in one 10-page sample--in this swirling cocktail party of a book. That's not to say that Barr's book isn't enjoyable--in fact, it's often delightful. Barr serves up amusing stories (such as that of poor King Charles II of Navarre, immolated in an alcohol-soaked sheet), interesting factoids (the first grapevines in California were planted at the San Juan Capistrano mission in 1779), and strong opinions. Some of his opinions are funny, some are bound to raise hackles (that alcoholism is not a disease, but a "failure of personality," for example), while others are somewhat sensible but destined to be unpopular. Barr feels that Americans have an unhealthy relationship with alcohol, so we should teach young people (and those who drink to excess) to drink sensibly, worry less about pregnant women having the occasional drink and more about prenatal care, and switch the focus from stricter drunk-driving laws to laws aimed at reducing dangers such as cell-phone use and road rage. Just when things get too serious, however, Barr is off again in another direction with another witty snippet. Unfortunately, like many partygoers, Barr tends to repeat himself--frequent footnotes direct the reader to "See Chapter 4," "See Chapter 4 again," or even "See Chapter 4 once more." Perfect for browsing or ingesting in small doses, too much Drink in one sitting may leave readers with a headache. --C.B. Delaney

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Titel: Drink: A Social History of America
Verlag: Carroll & Graf Publishers
Erscheinungsdatum: 2000
Zustand: very good

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Buchbeschreibung Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2000. Paperback. Buchzustand: Very Good. Drink: A Social History of America This book is in very good condition and will be shipped within 24 hours of ordering. The cover may have some limited signs of wear but the pages are clean, intact and the spine remains undamaged. This book has clearly been well maintained and looked after thus far. Money back guarantee if you are not satisfied. See all our books here, order more than 1 book and get discounted shipping. . Buchnummer des Verkäufers 7719-9780786707430

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Buchbeschreibung Carroll & Graf Pub. Paperback. Buchzustand: Good. Only lightly used. Book has minimal wear to cover and binding. A few pages may have small creases and minimal underlining. Buchnummer des Verkäufers G0786707437I3N00

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Buchbeschreibung Carroll & Graf Publishers, 1999. Buchzustand: Good. N/A. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Buchnummer des Verkäufers GRP3980114

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Buchbeschreibung Carroll & Graf Publishers, 1999. Buchzustand: Good. N/A. Ships from Reno, NV. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Buchnummer des Verkäufers GRP91542075

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