Alcohol: The World's Favorite Drug by Griffith Edwards

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In Alcohol: The World’s Favorite Drug, written by Griffith Edwards, the many stages, views and sides of alcohol are addressed. Not only does one see the present effects of alcohol, but one sees the history and future of alcohol, both scientifically and socially. The author’s purpose was to demonstrate that alcohol has many faces to be differentiated and it has been this way for an extensive amount of time.

It begins with the physiological effects of the drug alcohol. One particular fact I found interesting was that alcohols effects depend not only on the chemicals, but on how the drinker believes it will affect them and the environment they are in. So if a drinker thinks that they will get great pleasure and happiness when drinking with their good buddies, they most likely will. It explains how alcohol is a drug of dependence (Edwards 58). Calling alcoholism a disease is right and wrong as told by Edwards.

It next it begins the history of drink. In Christianity, there was the wine that was to be the blood of Christ. In this way, it is portrayed as a good substance. However, it tells of the dark side, the sin of drunkenness in some cultures (Edwards 31). He demonstrates how the views of alcohol differ in different situations through time.

Throughout most the rest of the book, the history of drink is illuminated. It talks about Thomas Nashe’s Menagerie and how there are different types of drunkards (Edwards 47). The more common known history of alcohol would probably be the great American prohibition experiment, as Edwards calls it (Edwards 73). He tells how the popular rehab program known as alcoholics anonymous came about and how it influenced the treatment of alcoholism (Edwards 103).

After this he gets more into the future of alcoholism. He realizes that the drinker’s dilemma has always been the same, “to drink or not to drink” or they think “one more won’t hurt.” (Edwards 181). He states that the primary outcomes are only first-rate. It is the long term mysterious future that has the tragic consequences. His future thinking is involved with conducting studies to illustrate the impact of alcohol in the long term on various features. One example is the study he conducted on drinking and the risk of breast cancer. He states that the ideas that “alcohol might cause breast cancer are not at present established”.

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