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Smashing the Liquor Machine Book Talk

On Tuesday, Sept. 14 at 5 p.m., Dr. Mark Lawrence Schrad will give a book talk on Smashing the Liquor Machine in Falvey Memorial Library’s Speakers’ Corner. The event is free and open to the public. All visitors to campus, regardless of vaccination status, are required to wear masks inside campus buildings. 

About Mark Schrad, PhD 

Mark Lawrence Schrad is an Associate Professor of Political Science in Villanova University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, where he teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on Russian politics and history, post-communist democratization, comparative politics, international law, international organizations, and globalization. 

About Smashing the Liquor Machine: A Global History of Prohibition 

In a new book, Smashing the Liquor Machine (Oxford University Press, 2021), Mark Lawrence Schrad, PhD, offers an international history of alcohol prohibition—redefining it as a progressive, global, pro-justice movement that affected virtually every significant world leader from the 18th through the early 20th centuries.  

Smashing the Liquor Machine offers a wide-ranging, revisionist history of the effort to ban the predatory liquor traffic—and corrects distortions about those who supported Prohibition across the centuries. He examines anti-alcohol movement around the globe through the experiences of pro-temperance leaders like Vladimir Lenin, Leo Tolstoy, Mahatma Gandhi, and anti-colonial activists across Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. In addition, he places temperance in a global context, showing how the movement often aligned with progressivism, social justice, liberal self-determination, democratic socialism, labor rights, women’s rights, and indigenous rights. 

Smashing the Liquor Machine gives voice to minority and subaltern figures who resisted the global liquor industry, and further highlights that the impulses that led to the temperance movement were far more progressive and variegated than American readers have been led to believe. 

More About Temperance 

If you are interested in learning more about the temperance movement, check out this Special Collections and Digital Library exhibit on the 19th century writings of Samuel Alanson Lane. Lane was a strong supporter of the temperance movement and traveled the country talking at various temperance conventions. The exhibit includes writings from Lane as well as temperance propaganda, advertisements, and pledges.  

Other Books by Mark Lawrence Schrad 

Schrad, M. L. (2014). Vodka politics: Alcohol, autocracy, and the secret history of the Russian state. Oxford University Press. 

Schrad, M. L. (2010). The political power of bad ideas: Networks, institutions, and the global prohibition wave. Oxford University Press. 


""Jenna Renaud is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library.


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Last Modified: September 13, 2021