The original 1906 edition of The Book of Tea is one of the classic texts found on the desks of artists, poets, teaists and Zen Buddhists around the world. The book has been re-designed and expanded for a contemporary audience.
You will discover the fascinating character of Okakura Kakuzo and the story of how he came to write one of the twentieth century's most influential books on art, beauty, and simplicity--all steeped in the world's communal cup of tea. His incredible journey took him from Yokohama to New York, Paris, Bombay, and Boston, where his life intertwined with such luminaries as Rabindranath Tagore, John Singer Sargent, Henry James, John La Farge, Isabella Stewart Gardner, Ezra Pound, and Henri Matisse. His writings influenced the work of such notable artists as Frank Lloyd Wright and Georgia O'Keeffe.
American tea writer Bruce Richardson includes many historical photographs and illustrations in this updated edition of Okakura's classic text, along with unique insight into how Okakura's philosophy continues to inspire today's tea culture. Plus, Richardson includes an all-new chapter on America's thirst for Japanese tea during the late 1800s, illustrated with archival photographs.
Kakuzo Okakura, who was known in America as a scholar, art critic, and Curator of Chinese and Japanese Art at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, directed almost his entire adult life toward the preservation and reawakening of the Japanese national heritage -- in art, ethics, social customs, and other areas of life -- in the face of the Westernizing influences that were revolutionizing Japan around the turn of the century.
This modern classic is essentially an apology for Eastern traditions and feelings to the Western world -- not in passionate, oversentimental terms, but with a charm and underlying toughness which clearly indicate some of the enduring differences between the Eastern and Western mind. Okakura exhibits the distinctive "personality" of the East through the philosophy of Teaism and the ancient Japanese tea ceremony. This ceremony is particularly revelatory of a conservative strain in Japanese culture; its ideals of aesthetic tranquility and submission to the ways of the past find no parallel in the major cultural motifs of the West.
Not only does he discuss the tea ceremony and its rigid formalities, and the cult and patterns of belief surrounding tea and tea-drinking, but Okakura also considers religious influences, origins, and history, and goes into the importance of flowers and floral arrangements in Japanese life -- their proper appreciation and cultivation, great tea-masters of the past, the tea-room with its air of serenity and purity, and the aesthetic and quasi-religious values pervading all these activities and attitudes.
Okakura's English style was graceful, yet exceptionally clear and precise, and this book is one of the most delightful essay-volumes to the English language. It has introduced hundreds of thousands of American readers to Japanese thinking and traditions. This new, corrected edition, complete with an illuminating preliminary essay on Okakura's life and work, will provide an engrossing account for anyone interested in the current and central themes of Oriental life.
"A seminal guide to Asian life and thought. . . . Very highly recommended."--Midwest Book Review
The classic 1906 essay on tea drinking, its history, aesthetics, and deep connection to Japanese culture. Kakuzo Okakura felt "Teaism" could influence the world: "Tea with us becomes more than an idealisation of the form of drinking; it is a religion of the art of life."
"Transcending the narrow confines of its title, presents a unified concept of life, art and nature. Along the way exploring topics related to tea appreciation, including Zen, flower arranging and Taoism. An early cultural activist, Okakura's mission was to preserve Japanese art and aesthetic practices from an extinction that seemed imminent." --The Japan TimesNow in paperback with a new foreword and new photographs This classic work by Okakura Kakuzo has inspired many generations of readers by illuminating the underlying spirit and message of the venerable Japanese tea masters. The Book of Tea doesn't focus on the tea ceremony itself, but rather on the Zen Buddhist philosophy behind it. Kakuzo teaches us to cultivate an everyday awareness of the beauty in all the common things around us. His powerful message is even more relevant today than when he wrote this book, and it serves as a wonderful introduction to the aesthetics of Japanese culture. This edition has a new foreword by Andrew Juniper, who runs the Wabi-Sabi Art Gallery in West Sussex, England, and an introduction by Liza Dalby, the first American woman to be fully trained as a geisha in Japan in the 1970's. In 1906, in turn-of-the-century Boston, a small, esoteric book about tea was written with the intention of being read aloud in the famous salon of Isabella Stewart Gardner--Boston's most notorious socialite. It was authored by Okakura Kakuzo, a Japanese philosopher, art expert, and curator. Little known at the time, Kakuzo would emerge as one of the great thinkers of the early 20th century, a genius who was insightful, witty, and greatly responsible for bridging Western and Eastern cultures. Okakura had been taught at a young age to speak English, and was more than capable of expressing to Westerners the nuances of tea and the Japanese Tea Ceremony. Nearly a century later, Kakuzo's The Book of Tea is still beloved the world over, making it an essential part of any tea enthusiast's collection. Interwoven with a rich history of Japanese tea and its place in Japanese society is a poignant commentary on Asian culture and our ongoing fascination with it, as well as illuminating essays on art, spirituality, poetry, and more. The Book of Tea is a delightful cup of enlightenment from a man far ahead of his time.
"The Republic Of Tea Book Of Tea & Herbs" is a comprehensive introduction to the world of tea and herbs, with specific information about fine tea varietals, all organized by country and growing regions. There are over 100 illustrations in this highly imaginative and entertaining volume packed with tea fact, lore, and reflection.
If you're on a first-name basis with your barista but haven't perfected (or even attempted) making caf -quality coffee at home, let Brew show you the way. In this approachable guidebook, author and coffee expert Brian W. Jones demystifies specialty coffee's complexities, teaches you how to buy the best beans and brewing equipment, offers in-depth primers for mastering various slow-coffee techniques (including pour over, French press and moka pot), and supplies you with dozens of recipes for invigorating coffee-based drinks and cocktails. Brew isn't a book for coffee professionals, but rather an indispensable and accessible guide for any specialty-coffee lover who wants to make better coffee at home.
Alcohol and caffeine are deeply woven into the fabric of life for most of the world's population, as close and as comfortable as a cup of coffee or a can of beer. Yet for most people they remain as mysterious and unpredictable as the spirits they were once thought to be. Now, in Buzz, Stephen Braun takes us on a myth-shattering tour of these two popular substances, one that blends fascinating science with colorful lore, and that includes cameo appearances by Shakespeare and Balzac, Buddhist monks and Arabian goat herders, even Mikhail Gorbachev and David Letterman (who once quipped, "If it weren't for the coffee, I'd have no identifiable personality whatsoever").
Much of what Braun reveals directly contradicts conventional wisdom about alcohol and caffeine. Braun shows, for instance, that alcohol is not simply a depressant as popularly believed, but is instead "a pharmacy in a bottle"--mimicking the action of drugs such as cocaine, amphetamine, valium, and opium. At low doses, it increases electrical activity in the same brain systems affected by stimulants, influences the same circuits targeted by valium, and causes the release of morphine-like compounds known as endorphins--all at the same time. This explains why alcohol can produce a range of reactions, from boisterous euphoria to dark, brooding hopelessness. Braun also shatters the myth that alcohol kills brain cells, reveals why wood alcohol or methanol causes blindness, and explains the biological reason behind the one-drink-per-hour sobriety rule (that's how long it takes the liver, working full tilt, to disable the 200 quintillion ethanol molecules found in a typical drink). The author then turns to caffeine and shows it to be no less remarkable. We discover that more than 100 plant species produce caffeine molecules in their seeds, leaves, or bark, a truly amazing distribution throughout nature (nicotine, in comparison, is found only in tobacco; opium only in the poppy). It's not surprising then that caffeine is far and away the most widely used mind altering substance on the planet, found in tea, coffee, cocoa, chocolate, soft drinks, and more than 2,000 non-prescription drugs. (Tea is the most popular drink on earth, with coffee a close second.) Braun also explores the role of caffeine in creativity: Johann Sebastian Bach, for one, loved coffee so much he wrote a Coffee Cantata (as Braun notes, no music captures the caffeinated experience better than one of Bachs frenetic fugues), Balzac would work for 12 hours non-stop, drinking coffee all the while, and Kant, Rousseau, and Voltaire all loved coffee. And throughout the book, Braun takes us on many engaging factual sidetrips--we learn, for instance, that Theodore Roosevelt coined the phrase "Good to the last drop" used by Maxwell House ever since; that distances between Tibetan villages are sometimes reckoned by the number of cups of tea needed to sustain a person (three cups being roughly 8 kilometers); and that John Pemberton's original recipe for Coca-Cola included not only kola extract, but also cocaine.
Whether you are a sophisticated consumer of cabernet sauvignon and Kenya AA or just someone who needs a cup of joe in the morning and a cold one after work, you will find Buzz to be an eye-opening, informative, and often amusing look at two substances at once utterly familiar and deeply mysterious.