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Lecture 7

Lecture 7

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Department
History
Course
HIST 3109
Professor
Roderick Phillips
Semester
Fall

Description
Lecture 7 Tuesday, November 5, 2013 • Today: the anti-alcohol movement th • Centered in 19 century o Temperance movements o Prohibition movement o Any movement that focused on retriction of alcohol o Either regulating consumption or sale of alcohol • Successful o Prohibition in US/Soviet Union/Norway/Finland/Iceland/Belgium/Canada/some Mexican states/India o Very successful policy in that it was adopted by many places o Also failed because it wa repealed in all of these places o But Prohibition was great success of the temperance/prohibiiotn movements of 1800s • Ther were voices and concerns about alcohol consumption (abuse of alcohol) o Benjamin Rush’s moral and physical thermometer—beverages that can be drunk temperately and those that lead to intemperance  Light beer, wine, etc. can be consumed safely, moderately, with food  Spirits (rum, whiskey, etc.) that could nto be consumed temperately  First outine of the idea of addiction—relationshp between the consumer and these beverages that leads to addiction  This was in 1798—end of 18 century o 19 century: anti-alcohol movements  Mainly in US, then Canada, Europe, other countries  **Temperance movement in Japan—a book came out on that! • Temperance movemetns important for history of popular movemets o Largest movements of any kind (civilian ones) o By middle and second half of 1800s, hundreds of thousands of people signe dup/paid subscriptions to these movements o Sign of a mass society, civic society • All geared towars controlling alcohol, but various specific aims o Some merely wanted to ensure that people drank moderately (concerned about excessive consumption)—TEMPERANCE societies  Although some temperance societies wanted to abstain completely from alcohol • Key terms: o TEMPERANCE  WCTU (interational society that began in US)—Woman Christian Temperance Union  Founded in 1870s in the US, very quickly developed international branches (UK, Australia, new Zealand)  Initialyl the major temperance organization  Only women could belong to it, had to takea pledge to abstain from alcohol  Initially, concerned more about spirits than beer and wine. The kinds of things Benjamin Rush was concerned about. But later adopted more rigorous program that called for people to abstain entirely  “Temperance”: slippery word. Seems to refer to moderate drinking, but some advocates wanted to abstain entirely from alchol.  Came close to the Prohibitionist position o PROHIBITION  Difference between people who advocated abstention (abstaining)— temperance advocates • You CHOOSE to abstain • They voluntarily take the pledge, sign that you would not drink alcohol  Prhobitionists went further, wanted to adopt coercive policy • People should not be permitted to drink alcohol • Should not be produced, sold, or consumed • If you stop production and retailing (distribution), can stop people from drinking it • But that’s easier said than done o What united them: concern about effects of alcohol consumption on society, health of individuals, health of society and specific institutions (the family…rise in illegitimacy rates, increase in family breakdown and divorces, belief that alcohol lay at the basis of many of these issues) • Some temperance movements were secular, but most were religious o Most of them were Protestant o **anti-aclohol movements unsuccessful in Catholic countires—France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, south of Germany o Successful in Scandinavia, US, Canada but not Quebec, north of Germany, etc. o Catholic-Protestant divide o Protestants: more rigorous view on alcohol o Opposed to excessive consumption, were more restrictive and had more regulations on alcohol o Whether this has to do with tehology or more to do with something else is hard to tell, • But we can say that anti-alcohol movements more successful in places where spirits consumed more than beer (US, Canada, northern Europe like Scandinavia and Russia, Belgium) o Most anti-alcohol concerned more about spirits o Could be that we’re not looking so much at religion but countries where spirits were consumed more (and happened to be more Protestant) o But in the US, Protestants were represented more than Catholics even though they come form same country… o Complicated picture—this movement against alcohol • Have a look at some of these movements in US, England, Europe • After that: underlying conditions that gave rise to these movments • **UNITED STATES** o Emergence of anti-alcohol movements largely as response to what was perceived as heavy alcohol consumption in late 1700s, early 1800s o There appears to be high level of consumption during that time, declined through much of 19 century (perhaps as respone to temperance activity) o As early as 1808, we find first temperance society being organized o By 1820s-1830s, many temperance organizations, particularly in north-East o Massachussetts society formed in 1818, focuse don spirits. o By 1830s, some of these societies stressed total abstention, some moved towards prohibition perspective o Massachusetts is interesting case—begant o regulate spirits in a way they’d never been regulated before (in 1838). Banned sale of spirits in volumes less than 5 gallons  That’s a lot of spirits…why make that a regulation? Too expensive. You can’t just buy a bottle, have to buy 5 gallons, too much for poor people to afford. Trying to price poor people out of getting spirits o Other states followed—by 1840s, US supreme court ruled that state could refuse licences to sell spirits o Building through 1820s-40s of regulations, at least in northeast us o Soon, prohibition policies put in place. State of Maine introduced prohibition on state level—alcohol could not be produced or sold. o But it didn’t ban consumption—could bring it from another state and drink it. o Police: permitted to search private premises if there was suspicion of them producing alcohol. If 3 citizens complained, police had right to enter someone’s home. If convicted a third time for breaking prhobition rules (selling/producing), did jail time. o By 1855, all New England states introduced prohibition o But there was reaction—1850s-1870s: ebb and flow of prohibition laws being put in place o Main introduced in 1851, repealed in 1856, reintroduced in 1858, kept it permanently..1884: prohibition part of state constitution o US would follow this pattern: introduce prohibition on state basis. By WWI, something like ¾ of all states had some form of prohibition on the books. o By the time national Prohibition took effect in 1920, it had already existed in most of the states o Temperance movements tended to focus lobbying on state legislatives—wanted to get states to introduce prohibition o Within the state,s liquor licencing often done by counties. Indiviual counties could also introduce prohibition (not permitting licenced premises—bars, taverns, etc.) Evenin states that didn’t have prohibition, you had wet counties and dry counties. o This pattern could be foundin othe rplaes—burrows in New Zealand, a Toronto district went wet in 1989/1990. This wasn’t peculiar to US. o Temperance movements were varied in their approach—some religious (WCTU)  But WCTU was interested not only in temperance but also women’s suffrage—real connection between temperance movements and women’s movements in 19 century.  Women: particular interst in temperance. Didn’t drink as much, also believed to be victims of alcohol. Seduced through it, beaten by drunken husbands, neglected by men drinking away earnings  Anti-alcohol movement: supporting women’s interests—the family and children  Women rallied to organizations like WCTU. WCTU later took on policies like vote for women for the same reason they advocated temperance: if women have the vote, governments would put in policies that are supportive of family, children, morality. o Successful to a degree  Hundreds of htousands of members  But fundamentally unsuccessful  Still has branches everywhere (ex. In Toronto, we still see banners from their street marches…exhibit on that at Museum of Civilization) th  But they really failed in 19 century US. 1890s: leadership of anti-alcohol movement taken by Anti-Saloon League o Anti-Saloon League of America (ASLA)  Much more successful  Dominated by men  Much bigger organization  Welathy—one of the supporters was Rockefeller. He funded the ASLA, gave them resources to make the organization influential  Built printing plant for the organization  They printed pamplhets and books in various European languages  (Had a lot of immigrants from Eastern Europe, etc.)—pamphlets in Hebrew, Italian, German, etc.  Much more effective than WCTU—non-partisan. WCTU would join with democrats, republicans, whoever seemed to be helping at the time  ASLA: resolutely non-partisan. Didn’t turn off people (members of the other party)  Very successful on state leve, also on federal level  One of big successes on federal level: had act passed in 1913 that prohibited the movement of alcohol from wet state to dry state.  US: alcohol policy iwthin jurisdiction of states, but federal government has control of MOVEMENT of alcohol from state to state. So they passed this act.  Lots of complaints by legislators in dry states that all this alcohol was coming in. Effective lobbying of the Anti-Saloon Leauge was major in this  Opposed to saloons  Saloons: peculiarly American institution, effectively all-male bars.  Said to be dens of immorality, it’s where men went to blaspheme, drink, swear, engage in criminal activities, sell stolen goods…  Not so much to discuss politics, etc.  Thought to represent the worst of drinking culture. Aim was to shut down the saloons, could put an end to the drinking problem in US.  This is the run-up to Prohibition (1920) • UNITED KINGDOM o Prohibition was not an issue at all o People of Great Britain never interested o Temperance societies just wanted moderate drinking, tended to focus on spirits (not so much beer, and wine was not an issue)—working-class people drank beer, and government didn’t want to interfere too much with beer drinking.  WWI—a lot of pressure for governemtn to do something about drinking so it wouldn’t interfere with industrial production  But they couldn’ interfere with people’s right to drink at the end of a long day of work o Anyway, focus on spirits o Most of the temperance movement came from working-class themselves o When we look at Marxists, socialists, nions—they were split with regards to alcohol o Some thought it was conspiracy to keep the workers in their place  Employers made alcohol at reasonable price for workers so that when they ewren’t working, they would drink themselves into inertia, would stop from from being policitalyl active (in unions, etc.)  This is why some socialists, Maxists, and a few unionists advocated prohibition (on the side of middle class prohibitionists)  They thought this was true…if they could only stem access to alcohol, would get them politically active o This was more important in UK, also in Russia o In Russia, Socialists actually allied with Tsarist govenrmetn in support of prohibition in 1914, continuation of prohibiotn after revolution in 1917 o There was this push towards prohibition, but not a strong one in UK (not as much as US) o Temperance movement in UK was divided in terms of aims, reationalizatios (some religious, some secular), ran up against middle class aversion to coercion (whole principle of prohibition is coercion, forcing people not to produce/sell so people have no choice but to abstain) o This was acceptable in US, but not in UK (went against concepts of liberalism in English iddle class in 1800s) o John Stewart Mill—great liberal  Declaring that prohibition plicies were monstrous, interfering with liberty of the individual  Drinking: individual choice, drunkenness not a subject ofr legislative interference o This liberal sentiment seems tob e shared by legislators  1850s-60s: various attempts to restrict bar hours/pub hours, especially on Sundays  Massive fight ot reduce hours during which alcohol could be sold  1854: law passed to prevent drinking places from drinking 2:30-6pm, after 10pm.  There were massive protests  Hyde Park, 1855—about 200,000 people protested. Forced government to amend the law and instead of closing 2:30-6pm, had to close 3-5pm and stay open until 11pm. Extra 90 minutes of drinking as a result.  Difficult in UK to bring legislation to restrict alcohol availability and consumption  By WWI, ¾ of US states had embraced prohibition. But in UK, still fighting minute by minute for closing times during the week.  Emphasis on the effects of alcohol on children (keep in mind there was no minimum drinking age)—only came into effect late 1800s/early 1900s.  Law forbade sale of spirits to children under age 14 in early 1900s.  **Trying to reduce hours of sale, attempts to protect children  CHldren: focus of temperance campaigners around the world. Ide aof protecting children. For many centuries, had been viewed as small adults th (could be executed for crimes). During 19 century, various policies put in place to protect children. Became one of the targets of temperance campaigns. Idea: if you could eductate children not to drink, they would be abstaining adults. o Many books dedicated to children—temperance manual for teacher, guiding teachers in how they shoud instruct chidlrenon dangers of alcohol.  From 1878—goes trhough origin of alcohl, fermentation, manufacture of beer  How alcohl gives red cheeks, does it lead to poisoning blood/brain/crime  Each lesson has catechism—question and answer.  Question: what is temperance?  Answer: proper control of the appetites  Question: why are temperance soicities started?  Answer: to stop the mischief caused by alcoholic drinks  **Children were to learn by rote the answers to these questions o Children were very important for the anti-alcohol movement th o Book from late 19 century: what a young boy ought to know (the mystery of birth). How to tell children about sex. But also about food and drink—says things like, “some boys weaken and disease their bodies by developing appetite for vinegar, salt, cloves, spice, etc.” o Drink only that which confers good health—pure water is best drink for all  Tea and coffee—can neer grow to be large, strong, muscular man  Tea and coffee are stimulants, lessen vitality, strength, and growth o “If you value you rlife, happiness, usefulness, never take spirits…learn from what happens to people who drink rum…remember the true teaching of the Bible on this subjet”  Children were important figures in the temperance rhetoric, propaganda of this period o “The Curse of Rum” by Arnold Blankman—a book from this period  Picture of Statue of Liberty enlightening the world—on other side, statue of licence of wine, beer, port, etc. Licence is not liberty, nor in liberty licence.  Liberty brings contentment freedom, light—licence brings prostitution, crime, etc.  “The gallows ends all”—it’s all the same lineage of rhetoric, the effects of the abuse of alcohol. Like Benjamin Rush. • FRANCE o Not that interested in temperance o Interseting relationship with alcohol th o Most of 19 century: when there were vigorogus temperance movements I Australia, New Zealand, UK, etc., French uninterested in the alcohol problemand denied that there was a problem in France o A prime minister: “there is no drunk person in france” o Most people drank wine until 1870s (phyloxera, drank spirits) o Anyway, they believed as long as you drank wine, you could not be alcoholic. In fact, cure for alcoholism was drinking wine. o Fro 1870s, things begant o change—phylloxera intermpreted as vengeance of God on the French, the French lost Franco-Prussian war (1870-1871), a lot of soul-searching about loss of the war—French were immoral, declined from Church, lowering birth rate because of national birth control…seen as signof wickedness,s evil. God lost the war for them, smote the vines.  Bible: God will kill the vines. Constant threat. o Energized temperance movement, also generated great deal fo opposition from wine industry o A lot of push-back form the industry. o Also from physicians—convinced that wine was good—therapeutic, healthful, nutritious, etc.  Equally healthy to eggs, meat,and milk  Signed by faculty of medicine at Madrid, Montpellier, etc.  “Alcoholism kept in check by consumption of wine” by public health expert in France  Wine is most healthy drink—by Louis Pasteur  **pulled out te big guns to support wine o Temperance movement in france never went anywhere o 1900: French Parliament made wine the national beverage of france o Became major national symbol o Temperance didn’t have a chance o French government continue dto supply soldiers during WWI, in 1930s supported campaign to get people to drink more wine (giving it to chidren in school) o These policeis didn’t turn around until Nikolas Serkozy (began to bring in legislation to reduce alcohol consumtion..many people still upset about that) • **US: Anti-alcohol movments successful o Drew on fairly widespera dsense of unease about level of alcohol consumption (spirits) • UK: not so much o Spirits not very important • France: total failure of temperance movements o Cultural recognition of alchol in the form of wine o That would stop from about 1880 onwards, when supply of wine begant o diminish and workers turned to spirits (absinthe)—but still, temperance didn’t make any headway in France at this time • Temperance is very interesting phenomenon, so is the Prohibition movement o Book: “The Power of Bad Ideas”—Prohibiton as a bad idea  Many commissions in Scandinavia and even US had said that Prohibition will not work, will be counter-productive. But even so, wa put in place as a policy because it seemed like simple solution  Similar to current government policies • BREAK • Bases for the anti-alcohol movements • A lot written on temperance movements, especially i
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