The passage of the 18th Amendment (banning the sale of alcohol) and the 19th (women's suffrage) in the same year is no coincidence. These two Constitutional Amendments enabled women to redefine themselves and their place in society in a way historians have neglected to explore. Liberated Spirits describes how the fight both to pass and later to repeal Prohibition was driven by women, as exemplified by two remarkable women in particular.
Ambrose’s story brings to the fore how much has changed for women in politics but also, more startlingly, how little ... as America approaches the centenary of women’s suffrage, Liberated Spirits offers an important, timely look at an era that is usually remembered for its speakeasies and flappers, rum runners and alcoholic writers. Behind all of that was the burgeoning politics of American women, determined to remake the country that had forgotten them.
A deep dive into the politics surrounding the Eighteenth Amendment ... readers might hunger for more biographical details about Sabin and Willebrandt, but those looking for the political history of Prohibition will value this comprehensive accounting.
Although the authors’ arguments are sometimes clogged by biographical detail and characters and issues that are introduced and then dropped, the book raises fascinating questions about the role of women in early-20th-century politics ... Readers willing to dig through dense scholarly details will find a rewardingly intricate account of how one political issue shaped several lives.