REBELS AND REFORMERS by Alberta Eiseman

REBELS AND REFORMERS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Four biographical sketches stand alone with no introductory material to indicate why these four individuals were chosen to complement Meltzer's broad-stroke history Those Were the Days. But the obvious yardstick is public service, and the choices are auspicious in themselves: Uriah Levy, an outspoken opponent of flogging who persevered against anti-Semitism in the US Navy until he finally achieved the rank of Commodore at the age of 68; feminist and abolitionist Ernestine Rose who rebelled against a marriage arranged by her rabbi father and (this was new to us) supported herself for some time on the profits from a household deodorizer she invented. The third and fourth profiles are of Louis Brandeis and Lillian Wald, both too often neglected recently. The format allows for no more than a quick summary of Brandeis' judicial accomplishments, though it does stimulate interest in his role in expanding both the arenas of business law and public interest advocacy. Wald's settlement house concept is more adequately dealt with, but here again her many causes are enumerated only in passing. Brief as the chapters are, they present their subjects with grace and simplicity. . . and the vigorous subjects don't need any more than that to make an impression.

Pub Date: May 1st, 1976
Publisher: (Zenith) Doubleday