About the Show

Acclaimed film-makers Ken Burns and Lynn Novick examine the controversial law concerning Prohibition in a five-part series that addresses many of the questions related to personal freedom, individual rights and government intervention. Since the pilgrims loaded the hold of the Mayflower with beer, alcohol and its attendant rituals have been at least as American as apple pie. However, as a wave of ideological fervour sweeps the country, many begin to see alcohol as a scourge and an impediment to a Protestant utopia of clean and righteous living. From the church-based temperance campaigns to the xenophobic Anti-Saloon League lobby, Americans argue fiercely about alcohol, eventually outlawing it in the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution, Prohibition. Part 1 of 5.