Better Late Than Never

The current issue of The Social History of Alcohol and Drugs has a review of Brewing Battles. The book was published over three and a half years ago but such delays are fairly common in academic reviewing.

If you want to read the full review you must be subscribed to the journal. If you have any interest in the topic I would encourage you to do that.

Martin Stack reviewed both Brewing Battles and Maureen Ogle’s Ambitious Brew. Here is an excerpt:

“Mittelman’s approach is quite different. She provides a more complete chronological overview, beginning decades before Ogle does. While she doesn’t spend as much time as does Ogle in connecting changes in the beer and the brewing industry to broader cultural and social developments, she is excellent on two key topics that Ogle downplays, regulation and worker-brewery relations. Mittelman examines thoroughly the history of the complex regulatory environment connecting beer, breweries, and the state and federal government, highlighting how and why this set of interconnections has changed over time. … Mittelman makes a significant contribution in her detailed discussions of how breweries and the federal government set about to develop a post-repeal regulatory system. …

Another topic Mittelman handles very well concerns worker-brewery relations. This discussion draws from some of her earlier work, and she provides some excellent analysis here. Of particular import is her discussion of brewery workers during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; she notes that brewery workers, as did workers in many industries, focused too much on their internal struggles. For brewing this proved particularly short sighted, as workers and owners did not ‘form a self-conscious alliance … to combat prohibition forces … until 1913.’ (p. 61)

Together, the Mittelman and Ogle books bring much needed attention to an understudied topic. … As a student of this industry, I greatly prefer Mittelman’s book.”

It is never too late for such praise.


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One Response to Better Late Than Never

  1. Jan Whitaker says:

    Very nice, Amy — congratulations!!

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