Brief Histories of Everyday Objects

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 10/4/2016
  • Publisher: Picador

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Hilarious, entertaining, and illustrated histories behind some of life's most common and underappreciated objects - from the paperclip and the toothbrush to the sports bra and roller skates

In the tradition of A Cartoon History of the Universe and, most recent, Randall Munroe's What If? comes Brief Histories of Everyday Objects, a graphic tour through the unusual creation of some of the mundane items that surround us in our daily lives. Chapters are peppered with ballpoint pen riots, cowboy wars, and really bad Victorian practical jokes. Structured around the different locations in our home and daily life—the kitchen, the bathroom, the office, and the grocery store—award-nominated illustrator Andy Warner traces the often surprising and sometimes complex histories behind the items we often take for granted. Readers learn how Velcro was created after a Swiss engineer took his dog for a walk; how a naval engineer invented the Slinky; a German housewife, the coffee filter; and a radical feminist and anti-capitalist, the game Monopoly. This is both a book of histories and a book about histories. It explores how lies become legends, trade routes spring up, and empires rise and fall—all from the perspective of your toothbrush or toilet.

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