Ken Burns New Doc Special- Prohibition Starts on 10/2

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by topaz, Sep 27, 2011.

  1. topaz

    topaz Well-Known Member

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    Ken Burn's new documentary special on the Prohibition Era starts on PBS on 10/2 at 8pm EST.

    Those who have an ipad or iphone can download an app to catch the early premiere episode of the series.


    http://www.pbs.org/kenburns/prohibition/

    Some of the voices used in the documentary are Tom Hanks, Jeremy Irons, Campbell Scott, Patricia Clarkson, and Peter Coyote.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2011
  2. Cachoo

    Cachoo Well-Known Member

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    I'll be watching: I want to see the mindset of those who believed this restrictive amendment could possibly work. WHAT were they thinking? And I like Ken Burns docs.
     
  3. Prancer

    Prancer Dysteleological Staff Member

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    I don't know what Ken Burns will say they were thinking, but I was always told that the original intent of the ladies who led the fight for Prohibition was to combat domestic violence and child neglect. Others thought it would reduce crime and disease.
     
  4. Cachoo

    Cachoo Well-Known Member

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    That I understand but did they really think they could enforce it....something like our unrealistic expectations with the "war on drugs." On a personal note my great grandfather immigrated from Poland and I recently was told about a car that he had custom made because he was such a large man for that time. I didn't know until I started asking about the expense involved that his bootlegging money paid for it. In fact I didn't know he was involved in bootlegging at all. He immigrated to New Jersey with nada so I guess he was living his version of the American dream. But even without the personal stuff I want to see anything Ken Burns has to offer. I've enjoyed all of his work but the Donner Party doc which was well done but horrifying.
     
  5. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    Right, wasn't this all part of the progressive era where people sought to purify government and this country? It's always been my understanding that a part of the reason why Prohibition was passed because it targeted many immigrant groups from southern and eastern European that were concentrated in urban areas. Many of these groups would frequent saloons and bars and would essentially drink and be merry much to the horror of WASPs whose sensibilities were simply appalled by such behavior and possibly threatened by the influxes of these new groups.

    I'll definitely be watching it as I'm sure the special will delve into the creation and expansion of organized crime due to Prohibition.

    I wonder if Ken Burns will talk about Joe Kennedy as there was talk that a lot of the Kennedy money came from bootlegging.
     
  6. Latte

    Latte Well-Known Member

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    I can't wait. This was one of the most interesting era's of the country, certainly of the 20th century. I will be planted in front of my tv.
     
  7. Latte

    Latte Well-Known Member

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    Am I the only one watching?
    Pretty good so far, very informative.
    Not as interesting as I thought it would be though.
     
  8. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

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    I'm mostly watching - missed the first 45 minutes of each (only 2 have been shown, right?). I'm finding it very interesting. Not entertaining but interesting.
     
  9. znachki

    znachki Active Member

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    I'm really enjoying it. But then, I am a history geek in general. I've read the book that the show is largely based on - Daniel Okrent's "Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition".

    I think it is a fascinating subject. It's another one of those periods that people just dismiss with - oh yeah, no alcohol. But so much more. Everything that came before, and all of the fallout that still has an effect today.

    This is the kind of show that can spark an interest in history for someone who has never been interested, or has never really thought about it before. The kind of show that makes you start to see all of the connections out there.
     
  10. topaz

    topaz Well-Known Member

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    I have enjoyed the series so far. Tonight is the conclusion.

    I love hearing the stories from bootleggers families. I did not know about the Washingtonian society. The communities were like a 19th century AA commune.
     
  11. skatingfan5

    skatingfan5 Well-Known Member

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    I've found it very interesting ... especially all of the 19th century anti-alcohol movements that preceded it (of which I previously was only dimly aware -- Carrie Nation, the WCTU -- that was about it). Rather chagrined to have to admit that. :shuffle:

    Unfortunately, reception for my local PBS affiliate is often very poor (non-existent :mad:), so while I saw the entire first episode on Sunday, I couldn't watch part 2 when it was first broadcast last night. I attempted to view the midnight repeat showing, but fell asleep sometime approaching 1:00 a.m. :(
     
  12. danceronice

    danceronice Corgi Wrangler

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    I found it quite interesting how the WCTU and the Anti-Saloon league were shrewd enough to align tightly with the revolutionary Progressive types (the radical birth control/eugenics sorts, hardcore workers' rights, etc) to get it all through as a mass social anti-Catholic, anti-immigrant vote (the "unAmerican" Eastern Europeans and their good old bogeymen the Catholics were targets for the birth control crowd--don't want those undesirables breeding.) And went for the trifecta with "black men drinking AND voting, eek!"

    I also love how the only two Protestant sects not on board were the Episcopalians and the Lutherans.
     
  13. MacMadame

    MacMadame Cat Lady-in-Training

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    That fascinated me. The documentary said that the Lutherans weren't on board because they were largely German just like the beer brewers but why weren't the Episcopalians?

    I know people who think that Episcopalians and Catholics are basically the same religion. So my only thought is that the Episcopalians might have thought going after Catholics to be hitting a bit too close to home. OTOH, it would have given them an ample opportunity to distance themselves from the Catholics if they had joined in.
     
  14. skatingfan5

    skatingfan5 Well-Known Member

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    I think it's more likely because they use sacramental wine in their services, as do Catholics.
     
  15. MacMadame

    MacMadame Cat Lady-in-Training

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    :duh:
     
  16. mpal2

    mpal2 Well-Known Member

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    I missed it but fortunately there is a repeat of Part 1 on tonight at 10. I hope this means repeats of parts 2 and 3 will follow soon.

    We still have a lot of screwed up alcohol laws in my state. Although there are still several puritanical abstinence people, a lot of the reason the laws still exist are because of very powerful liquor lobbies. They like having things the way they are because it means more money for themselves. Things are slowly changing but there are still too many dry counties and screwed up laws in the ones that do sell liquor.

    FYI, Jack Daniels distillery is in a dry county so it is not available for sale in their own hometown. I believe they used to provide free samples at the end of the distillery tour to get around it but had to either had to stop due to legal reasons or found a way to make money off of it. They managed to get a loophole in the laws that allows them to sell a commemorative bottle. The government likes the sales tax too much to disallow the sale.
     
  17. TygerLily

    TygerLily Well-Known Member

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    I accidentally found this last night and watched the conclusion. I was disappointed that I missed the other episodes, but now I'll have to watch for reruns. And order the book from the library.
     
  18. NeilJLeonard

    NeilJLeonard Well-Known Member

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    I did not see all of it, I missed much of part 1. I did watch all of parts 2 & 3. For all of that it was quite comprehensive on the why it was enacted & the why of it failing; illegal booze was stored & warehoused in great quantities before it went into effect & smuggling seemed to started on the 1st night, too.

    Very interesting and informative. Well worth the time spent watching.


    NJL (...I'll wait to see all of Part 1 whenever it is rebroadcast...)
     
  19. Latte

    Latte Well-Known Member

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    I'm a history buff. I guess my disappointment was that there was nothing new that I didn't already know. Always hoping for new information.
     
  20. Vagabond

    Vagabond Well-Known Member

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    Although the use of sacramental wine may have informed the views of the Episcopal and Lutheran Churches, I don't think it was the primary reason why they opposed Prohibition.

    The Volstead Act allowed for the use of alcohol for religious purposes (and other legitimate activities such as "scientific research" :shuffle:).

    And aren't there other Protestant denominations that use sacramental wine besides the Episcopalians and Lutherans (the Presbyterians, for example)?
     
  21. Cyn

    Cyn Well-Known Member

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    The blessing of and drinking of wine is also a part of just about every Jewish holiday :) .