Everything but the Coffee: Learning about America from Starbucks | National Humanities Center

Humanities in Class: Webinar Series

Everything but the Coffee: Learning about America from Starbucks

Capitalism; Corporations; Consumerism

Bryant Simon (Professor of History, Temple University)

January 30, 2020

Starbucks is everywhere. It is on busy street corners and intersections. It is in the mall, the airport, and supermarket. It is St. Louis and St. Cloud, Paris and Singapore. At one point, there was even a Starbucks in the Forbidden City in China. In the early 2000s, historian and writer Bryant Simon visited more than 400 Starbucks around the world to try to figure out what the company and its outlets told us about us, about what we care about and desire, what we want and what we think we need. In his book, Everything But the Coffee, Simon connects our deepest desires to be good, smart, ethical consumers with our equally strong yearning to consume in authentic and highly individual ways. Our coffee, Simon shows, is us, and we are our coffee. This webinar will look at Starbucks and the landscapes of coffee drinking in the United States and around the world.


Business / History / Capitalism / Corporations / Consumerism /