To Be Young Was Very Heaven

Adickes, Sandra
Date published: 
November 1997

'Sandra Adickes's account of the birth of American feminism bears more resemblance to an epic movie than a dry academic tome, with a rich cast of fiery, romantic idealists every bit a match for our own. Her portrait of political and social life in pre-war New York is reminiscent of movies such as The Age of Innocence, Once Upon a Time in America and Reds.' - Margarette Driscoll, Sunday Times In the years before World War I, New York City's Greenwich Village was a place of great artistic and political ferment. Political causes attracted throngs of supporters. Artistic movements filled cafes with boisterous conversation. And for the first time, women began to seize power and play important roles in the political and artistic landscape of the time: Margaret Sanger began her crusade for birth control; Mabel Dodge hosted her salons for the avant garde; Dorothy Day founded the Catholic Workers Movement. The list of women who played integral roles in American life during this time is endless and Sandra Adickes captures them all while evoking the now-lost paradise that New York offered to women at the turn of the century.