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The Woman's Hour

Elaine Weiss

4 Reviews

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Social & cultural history

The nail-biting climax of one of the greatest political battles in American history: the ratification of the constitutional amendment that granted women the right to vote

Nashville, August 1920. Thirty-five states have ratified the Nineteenth Amendment, twelve have rejected or refused to vote, and one last state is needed. It all comes down to Tennessee, the moment of truth for the suffragists, after a seven-decade crusade. The opposing forces include politicians with careers at stake, liquor companies, railroad magnates, and a lot of racists who don't want black women voting. And then there are the "Antis"--women who oppose their own enfranchisement, fearing suffrage will bring about the moral collapse of the nation. They all converge in a boiling hot summer for a vicious face-off replete with dirty tricks, betrayals and bribes, bigotry, Jack Daniel's, and the Bible.

Following a handful of remarkable women who led their respective forces into battle, along with appearances by Woodrow Wilson, Warren Harding, Frederick Douglass, and Eleanor Roosevelt, THE WOMAN'S HOUR is an inspiring story of activists winning their own freedom in one of the last campaigns forged in the shadow of the American Civil War, and the beginning of the great twentieth-century battles for civil rights.

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Praise for The Woman's Hour

  • Unforgettable ... THE WOMAN'S HOUR is both a page-turning drama and an inspiration for everyone, young and old, male and female, in these perilous times

  • Weiss humanizes both the women working in favor of the amendment and those working against it, exposing all their convictions, tactics, and flaws. She never shies away from the complicating issue of race; the frequent conflict and occasional sabotage that occurred between women's suffrage activists and the leaders of the nascent civil rights movement make for some of the most fascinating material in the book. A must-read for history buffs and political junkies

  • Elaine Weiss delivers political history at its best ... With a skill reminiscent of Robert Caro, she turns the potentially dry stuff of legislative give-and-take into a drama of courage and cowardice - Wall Street Journal

  • A genteel but bare-knuckled political thriller ... Weiss' narrative is energetic and buoyant even at the most critical moments

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Elaine Weiss

Elaine Weiss is an award-winning journalist and writer whose work has appeared in The Atlantic and The New York Times, as well as in reports and documentaries for National Public Radio and Voice of America. She is the author of one previous book, Fruits of Victors: The Woman's Land Army in The Great War.

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