[faw-ster, fos-ter]
Foster, Abigail Kelley, 1810-87, American abolitionist and advocate of women's rights, b. near Amherst, Mass. Abby Kelley, as she was known to her contemporaries, began her crusade against slavery in 1837 after teaching in several Quaker schools. In 1845 she married Stephen S. Foster, a radical abolitionist and reformer. As one of the first female lecturers before sexually mixed audiences, she was often greeted by listeners with extreme hostility. After suffering a great deal of abuse, even from fellow abolitionists, she began to devote more of her efforts toward women's rights. During the last 30 years of her active life, she was prominent as a suffragist.
Foster, Charles, 1828-1904, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury (1891-93), b. Seneca co., Ohio. He was long identified with the business interests of Fostoria, Ohio—named for C. W. Foster, his father. A Republican, he served (1871-79) in the U.S. House of Representatives and as a member of the Committee on Ways and Means aided in exposing (1874) fraudulent contracts in connection with the U.S. Treasury Dept. He was twice (1879, 1881) elected governor of Ohio. On the death of William Windom, President Benjamin Harrison appointed Foster, a declared bimetallist, to the Treasury post.
Foster, Sir George Eulas, 1847-1931, Canadian statesman, b. New Brunswick. He first entered the Canadian House of Commons in 1882 and later held a number of cabinet positions, including minister of finance (1888-96). He was a Canadian delegate (1918-19) to the Paris Peace Conference and chairman (1920-21) of the Canadian delegation to the first assembly of the League of Nations, of which he was made vice president. In 1920, Foster was acting prime minister of Canada after the retirement of Sir Robert Borden because of illness. In 1921 he was appointed to the Senate. He was knighted in 1914.

See his memoirs (ed. by W. S. Wallace, 1933).

Foster, Hannah Webster, 1759-1840, American novelist, b. Boston. She was one of the earliest American novelists and her epistolary novel, The Coquette (1797), was one of the first of its kind in America. It was based on the story (well known at the time) of Elizabeth Whitman, a well-educated 37 year-old unmarried woman who died in childbirth at an inn. Foster retold the story with sympathy, showing how American society unduly circumscribed the lives of women. Her novel The Boarding School (1798) was one of the first fictional accounts of education in the United States.
Foster, Jodie (Alicia Christian Foster), 1962-, American actress, b. Los Angeles. A child model, she began acting in TV commercials at three, appeared on various TV shows, and made her screen debut in Disney's Napoleon and Samantha (1972). Her first important role was as the barely adolescent prostitute of Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver (1976). She achieved undisputed Hollywood stardom and best actress Oscars for her portrayals of a working-class rape victim in The Accused (1988) and an FBI agent on the trail of a serial killer in The Silence of the Lambs (1991). Foster's other films include Bugsy Malone (1976), Carny (1980), Sommersby (1993), Nell (1994), and Anna and the King (1999). She began directing features with Little Man Tate (1991), in which she also starred, and has since directed Home for the Holidays (1995).
Foster, John Watson, 1836-1917, American diplomat, b. Pike co., Ind.; grandfather of John Foster Dulles. Foster practiced law (1857-61) at Evansville, Ind., and then served (1861-65) with the Union army in the Civil War. He later edited (1865-69) the Evansville Daily Journal and became a leader of the Indiana Republican party. The U.S. minister to Mexico (1873-80), to Russia (1880-81), and to Spain (1883-85), Foster was (1892-93) Secretary of State under President Benjamin Harrison. He represented (1893) the United States in the arbitration of the Bering Sea Fur-Seal Controversy (see under Bering Sea and acted (1894) for China in negotiations for the treaty with Japan. His numerous books include A Century of American Diplomacy, 1776-1876 (1900, repr. 1969) and Diplomatic Memoirs (1909).
Foster, Norman Robert, Baron Foster of Thames Bank, 1935-, British architect, b. Manchester, grad. Manchester Univ. school of architecture (1961), Yale school of architecture (M.A., 1962). Foster and three other architects formed the influential Team 4, working from 1963 to 1967, when he established his own firm. Noted for the elegant and graceful modernism of his many commissions, he also pays sharp attention to detailing. Foster finds expressive power in a wide variety of cutting-edge technologies, fitting each building to its site, street, or landscape and often taking into account various ecological factors. He first won acclaim for his 1964 "Cockpit," a minimalist glass bubble partially dug into the earth in Cornwall. Highlights of his early architectural output include the world's first inflatable office building (1970), the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, Norwich, England (1977), and the Hongkong and Shanghai Bank, Hong Kong (1985), an innovative skyscraper filled with natural light and lifted on columns above a public plaza.

Among the prolific Foster's later works are the Stansted Airport, London, with its lightweight "floating roof" (1991); Carré d'Art, Nǐmes, France (1993); the Joslyn Art Museum annex, Omaha, Nebr. (1994); the 60-story triangular Commerzbank, Frankfurt, Germany (1997), the world's first ecological high-rise with a building-height atrium core and nine tall sky gardens; the vast skylight-roofed Lap Kok Airport, Hong Kong (1998); and the renovation of Berlin's Reichstag (1999), with its glass dome and suspended interior spiral ramp. Foster has reshaped London's 21st-century skyline with such projects as the new city hall (2001), an inventive leaning sphere of glass and tubular steel also fitted with a curling interior ramp, and the Swiss Re tower (2004), a 40-story elongated oval nicknamed the Gherkin, sheathed in spirals of glass and featuring interior gardens on each level. Among his other 21st-century works are the Millau bridge (2004) over the River Tarn in France's Massif Central, the world's tallest road bridge, and the Hearst Tower, New York City (2006), a shimmering skyscraper sheathed in glass and diamond-gridded stainless steel built atop the company's original 1928 stone structure. Foster was knighted in 1990, and honored with a life peerage and awarded the Pritzker Prize in 1999.

See W. Blaser, ed., Norman Foster Sketch Book (1993); D. Jenkins, On Foster—Foster On (2000); studies by D. Sudjic (1986), D. Treiber (1995), P. Jodidio (1997), M. Quantrill (1998), and M. Pawley (1999).

Foster, Stephen Collins, 1826-64, American songwriter and composer, b. Lawrenceville, Pa. His pioneer family was aware of his talent for music, but not understanding it they provided him with little formal musical education. Foster's knowledge of African Americans was drawn from minstrel shows, particularly E. P. Christy's troupe, for which many of his songs were written. Because of their utter simplicity, his black dialect songs are often thought of as folk music. Feeling that prejudice against these "Ethiopian songs" existed, he was at first unwilling to risk his reputation by having his name appear on them. He had little aptitude for business, and his income was never commensurate with the popularity of his songs. Excessive drinking and extreme poverty ruined his last years. He died in Bellevue Hospital, New York City. Although his work was occasionally banal, the songs that have remained popular, such as Oh! Susannah (1848), Camptown Races (1850), Old Folks at Home (1851), My Old Kentucky Home (1853), Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair (1854), and Old Black Joe (1860), are unpretentious and genuine.

See biographies by J. T. Howard (rev. ed. 1962) and K. Emerson (1997); M. Foster, My Brother Stephen (1932); E. F. Morneweck, Chronicles of Stephen Foster's Family (2 vol., 1944, repr. 1973).

Foster, William Zebulon, 1881-1961, American Communist leader, b. Taunton, Mass. An itinerant worker in many different occupations, he was first affiliated with the Socialist party, next with the Industrial Workers of the World, and then with the American Federation of Labor. In his early years as a laborer he was profoundly influenced by Marxism. His activities among steelworkers were climaxed by his leadership of the famous steel strike of 1919. With the organization of the American Communist party in 1920, he became a prominent leader and was its presidential candidate in 1924, 1928, and 1932. In 1930 he was displaced as party head by Earl Browder, but on Browder's fall he became (1945) national chairman. He held this position until 1957. In 1948, Foster was charged with advocating the overthrow of the U.S. government, but because of ill health he did not go on trial (1949) with 11 other top Communists. Many of his personal experiences are recounted in From Bryan to Stalin (1937) and Pages from a Worker's Life (1939, repr. 1970). His other writings include Toward Soviet America (1932) and History of the Three Internationals (1955).
Foster's Lager is an internationally distributed Australian brand of 4.9% abv pale lager. It is brewed under licence in several countries, including the United States, and Russia. The European rights to the beer are owned by Heineken International, who brew and distribute Foster's in most European countries including; the United Kingdom, Greece, France, Belgium, Portugal, Finland, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Ukraine and the Republic of Ireland. In the United States and India, rights to the brand are owned by SABMiller.

The Foster's brand is also used on several other beers.

Foster's United Kingdom web site claims that "Brits drink over 30 pints of the Amber Nectar every second".


Foster's Lager was imported into the UK from Australia in its distinctly blue, white and gold cans since the early 1970s.

Awareness of the brand was spread in Britain by the satirical political magazine "Private Eye" which ran a cartoon series "The Adventures of Barry McKenzie" , featuring a bumbling Foster's swilling Australian "ex-pat".

In Britain, the Courage brewing group was acquired in 1986 by Australian "corporate raider" John Elliott. Perceiving the increasing popularity of imported Foster's Lager, it was decided to commence local brewing of the product by Courage.

Australian market

While popular in many countries, particularly where it is brewed locally, Foster's Lager does not enjoy widespread success in Australia. As a bottled beer produced by the Foster's Group (formerly the Carlton United Beverages group (CUB)) it is rarely promoted in Australia. Once a "premium" brand, Foster's Lager has been bypassed in favour of the Foster's Group's favoured premium brands of Carlton Crown Lager and Stella Artois.

Australians are both parochial and provincial about their beers; few beers are popular Australia-wide. The top selling beers in each state are:

In Australia until the end of the 1970s, Foster's Lager was a reasonably popular bottled and canned beer with a somewhat premium image. Then in the early 1980s there were major changes in the Australian brewing industry, including the merger of Castlemaine (Brisbane), Swan (Perth) and Toohey's (Sydney) into a national brewing group, as a result of acquisitions by Perth entrepreneur Alan Bond. In Queensland the high-volume Power's brewery was established by local entrepreneur Bernie Power.

Faced with inroads into its non-Victorian markets, Carlton and United Breweries (CUB) reviewed its product range and attempted to re-position some of its brands. So Foster's Draught was introduced, served on tap alongside established draught brands such as Castlemaine XXXX and Toohey's Draught. Despite some initial success, bolstered by heavy advertising, the brand did not prove popular and was eventually withdrawn from sale. Arguably, at the end of this failed exercise Foster's Lager was no longer viewed by consumers as a "premium" brand, and has not been promoted in Australia recently.

The Foster's Group has tended to promote the brands of Carlton Draught (mainstream market) and Victoria Bitter (working class male market). As an "also-ran", Foster's Lager will no doubt be brewed as a bottled and canned beer in Australia for the foreseeable future, at least for sentimental reasons. These days (2007), it is relatively difficult to find in smaller bottle shops, and is seldom found on tap.

Power's Brewery, south of Brisbane, was taken over by CUB and is now used to brew Victoria Bitter and other Foster's Group brands in Queensland, (including Foster's Lager).

Global market

In April 2006, Scottish & Newcastle plc announced that it has agreed to acquire the Foster’s brand in Europe (including Turkey), the Russian Federation and other countries in the Commonwealth of Independent States from Foster’s Group Limited for approximately £309 million. In August 2006, SABMiller announced that it had bought the rights to the Foster's brand in India for a reported $120m from private investors.


Scottish & Newcastle has also launched Foster's Twist, a beer with a hint of citrus that is marketed as a refreshing alternative to other heavier beers and Premium Packaged Spirits such as Smirnoff Ice. Foster's Twist is 4.5% abv.

There is also Foster's Super Chilled, which is served at a colder temperature and is available in pubs and bars.

In 2008, Foster's was introduced with a widget called a "scuba" placed into the can to ensure good mixing. This variant is only currently available in the UK.

In the UK, customers are also able to purchase a keg of Foster's for private parties, collecting and returning the keg at a participating store or public house.


Foster's Lager uses the slogan "The Amber Nectar" in Australia and the UK and "Australian for Beer," performed by Bob Ingersole, elsewhere overseas. The overseas advertising of the product often focuses upon the Australian connotations of the beer, e.g. with reference to stereotypical Australian imagery such as kangaroos, exaggerated accents, and cork hats.

The most recent slogan in the UK is, "Well you wouldn't want a warm beer would ya". This slogan goes with the advertisements that are currently featured on UK television.

The Foster's Lager brand was used as an advertising sponsorship deal with Norwich City Football Club from 1988 until 1993. At its commencement, the sponsorship by Foster's was the most lucrative sponsorship ever given to an English football club. The brand was also used in a sponsorship deal with the Australian Grand Prix from 1986-1993 then 2002-2006.



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