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Reading ‘Mrs. America’: These books detail events in TV series
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Reading ‘Mrs. America’: These books detail events in TV series

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Cate Blanchett as Phyllis Schlafly, in "Mrs. America." (Pari Dukovic/FX)

‘Mrs. America” is an ambitious limited TV series telling the story of the decade-long battle over the Equal Rights Amendment. Like a second-wave feminist version of “Avengers: End Game,” the nine-part drama pits conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly (Cate Blanchett) and her loyal housewife foot soldiers against a band of feminist all-stars, including Gloria Steinem (Rose Byrne), Bella Abzug (Margo Martindale) and Betty Friedan (Tracey Ullman).

The series is not based on a single book but baked out of numerous memoirs, biographies, scholarly histories and journalistic accounts, topped off with a generous helping of creative license. Creator and showrunner Dahvi Waller spent several years researching the time period, a process she rather enjoyed.

“Research is my jam,” says the former “Mad Men” writer. “I can spend hours down a rabbit hole on reading the Alton Evening Telegraph from 1972.”

Below are the books Waller says were most instructive when it came to understanding this complicated chapter of American political history as well as its tremendous impact on the present day.


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