Toilets of the World

A new book surveys loos around the world

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The new book “Toilets of the World” examines the various approaches that different cultures take for relieving themselves. Authors Mona E. Gregory and Sian James write, “Toilets are bay windows with a view on to a given population.”


They begin with a brief history of the toilet, from Middle Ages chamber pots to the invention of the flush toilet—it originated in (where else) Greece, and Queen Elizabeth I’s godson created one of the first modern equivalents as a gift for her. The monograph uses a anthropological lens to examine the evolution and current incarnations of the toilet, in the hope that it “provides a cultural and sociological analysis of the people who occupy different regions throughout the world.”

Divided by continent and country, the book highlights the varying degrees of creativity and technology of the WC. Toilets of the World sells from Amazon or check out the book’s website for international sellers.

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