2020年11月14日 6:22 AM #5983Adra Seamanゲスト
Technology and Culture
by Henry Petroski
- ISBN: 9780307266361 (0307266362)
- Release date: October 16, 2007
- Language: english
- Publisher: Knopf
- Genres: history, design, business, science, food
- Author: Henry Petroski
- Format: hardcover, 464 pages
About The Book
Like The Pencil, Henry Petroski’s The Toothpick is a celebration of a humble yet elegant device. As old as mankind and as universal as eating, this useful and ubiquitous tool finally gets its due in this wide-ranging and compulsively readable book. Here is the unexpected story of the simplest of implements — whether made of grass, gold, quill, or wood — a story of engineering and design, of culture and class, and a lesson in how to discover the extraordinary in the ordinary.
Petroski takes us back to ancient Rome, where the emperor Nero makes his entrance into a banquet hall with a silver toothpick in his mouth; and to a more recent time in Spain, where a young señorita uses the delicately pointed instrument to protect her virtue from someone trying to steal a kiss. He introduces us to Charles Forster, a nineteenth-century Bostonian and father of the American toothpick industry, who hires Harvard students to demand toothpicks in area restaurants — thereby making their availability in eating establishments as expected as condiments.
And Petroski takes us inside the surprisingly secretive toothpick-manufacturing industry, in which one small town’s factories can turn out 200 million wooden toothpicks a day using methods that, except for computer controls, haven’t changed much in almost 150 years. He also explores a treasure trove of the toothpick’s unintended uses and perils, from sandwiches to martinis and beyond.
With an engineer’s eye for detail and a poet’s flair for language, Petroski has earned his reputation as a writer who explains our world — from the tallest buildings to the lowliest toothpick — to us.
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