A Secret [illustrated] History of Coffee, Coca & Cola

A lot has been written about coffee and coca—the good, the bad and the ugly; probably equal parts truth and fiction. And there’s a good reason for it: coffee exporting alone is a $20 billion dollar industry, mostly consumed by industrialized nations while being produced by the world’s underclass; 67 percent of the world’s …

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A lot has been written about coffee and coca—the good, the bad and the ugly; probably equal parts truth and fiction. And there’s a good reason for it: coffee exporting alone is a $20 billion dollar industry, mostly consumed by industrialized nations while being produced by the world’s underclass; 67 percent of the world’s coffee is grown in the Americas alone. It’s so beloved today, you would never know drinking coffee once carried the death penalty.

A Secret History of Coffee, Coca & Cola is an illustrated history of coffee, coca leaf, kola nut, Coca-Cola, caffe-ine, coca-ine, secret formulas, special flavors, special favors, and the future of prohibition. It’s a tale of cocaine factories in Peru and New Jersey; secret experiments at the University of Hawaii; and a peek at the files of U.S. Bureau of Narcotics commissioner Harry J. Anslinger (infamous for his “Reefer Madness” campaign against marijuana, lesser known as a collaborator of The Coca-Cola Company).

Written and illustrated by Ricardo Cortés, an artist, writer and publisher working in Brooklyn, his latest book tells a very different story about caffeine—our commonplace legal addiction—and cocaine, it’s illegal cousin (chemically speaking). Both are natural stimulants, sometimes picked on the very same mountain. Both are global economic forces, one licit and the other profoundly illegal.

Cortés spent six years researching, writing and illustrating his book—and probably drinking his fair share of coffee. Politics aside, his illustrations are fabulous!

new york branding sports graphic design company

new york branding sports graphic design company

new york branding sports graphic design company

new york branding sports graphic design company

new york branding sports graphic design company

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