The Smoke of the Gods by Eric Burns
A Social History of Tobacco

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"Fox News Watch" host Eric Burns, who chronicled the social history of alcohol in The Spirits of America turns to tobacco in The Smoke of the Gods. Ranging from ancient times to the present day, The Smoke of the Gods is a lively history of tobacco, especially in the United States. Although tobacco use is controversial in the U.S. today, Burns reminds us that this was not always the case. For centuries tobacco was generally thought to have medicinal and even spiritual value. Most of the signers of the Declaration of Independence were tobacco users or growers, or both. According to Burns, tobacco changed the very course of U.S. history, because its discovery caused the British to support Jamestown, its struggling New World colony. An entertaining and informative look at a subject that makes daily news headlines, The Smoke of the Gods is a history that is, well, quite addictive.

About Eric Burns

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Eric Burns, a former NBC News correspondent and Today Show pundit, appears regularly as a commentator for Entertainment Tonight and hosts A&E s Arts & Entertainment Revue. He lives in Westport, Connecticut.
Published October 6, 2006 by Temple University Press. 296 pages
Genres: History, Self Help, Education & Reference, Health, Fitness & Dieting. Non-fiction

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For the ancient Mayans, Burns says, smoking was prayer, but when Rodrigo de Xerez, a crewmate of Columbus, returned to Spain, the Inquisitors saw what they assumed was the devil's fire spiralin

Jun 26 2006 | Read Full Review of The Smoke of the Gods: A Soci...

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