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Pretence for Prattle

Steven Shapin: Tea, 30 July 2015

Empire of Tea: The Asian Leaf that Conquered the World 
by Markman Ellis, Richard Coulton and Matthew Mauger.
Reaktion, 326 pp., £25, May 2015, 978 1 78023 440 3
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... During​ the four centuries of its presence in British life, tea has made the transition from the exotically novel to the domestically ordinary, from a drug with possibly potent psychoactive powers to the mere ‘cup that cheers’, from a focus of social ritual to a casually taken and often solitary drink, from control by a quasi-state monopoly to a series of branded products largely dominated by multinational firms, from an artisanal to an industrial product ...

How to Read Aloud

Irina Dumitrescu, 10 September 2020

Voices and Books in the English Renaissance: A New History of Reading 
by Jennifer Richards.
Oxford, 329 pp., £65, October 2019, 978 0 19 880906 7
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Learning Languages in Early Modern England 
by John Gallagher.
Oxford, 274 pp., £60, August 2019, 978 0 19 883790 9
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... practised in grammar schools too. And of course, voice is not absent even when we read quietly. As Matthew Rubery points out in his history of audiobooks, The Untold Story of the Talking Book (2016), silent readers often imagine voices sounding out the words, and the muscles used for speaking move in minuscule, barely detectable ways as they read.There is a ...

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