where the writers are
"Our Coffee, Ourselves"
Date of Review: 
Dec.29.2009
Reviewer: 
Richard Greenwald
Source: 
In These Times

Opening Lines: When Bryant Simon’s book, Everything but the Coffee: Learning about America from Starbucks (University of California Press, 2009) arrived in my mail, I thought, great, just what we need: another book by an academic that attempts to understand the world through a simplistic lens, like salt, sushi or coffee. That this genre sells well probably motivated Simon’s publisher. But Simon’s book is better and more honest than most of the genre in recognizing the limitations of both author and subject. He peeks into the inner life of American culture, but thankfully refrains from offering a unified theory that explains all.

My Comment -- While this is an engaged and largely favorable review, I wanted to hear more about what Greenwald thought about my ideas about the state, civic retreat, and the spread of brands.