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About the Film

Alcoholism

Memory

Death and Dying

Family History

Dialogue

Conclusion


Copyright © 2000 Trish Williams

Alcoholism — Historical and Cultural Issues


“A 1987 study found that American children see about 100,000 beer commercials each year.” (Monroe 46)
To better understand my father’s struggle with alcoholism and ultimately the social stigma and death, I wanted to put my experiences in perspective with the social history of alcoholism. Alcohol has always been part of the American culture, and today is a booming business. Alcohol is important to the economy, providing jobs, profit for businesses, as well as alcohol taxes which provide a source of revenue for the government. Advertising is everywhere in various media, promoting drinking as a socially acceptable activity. “A 1987 study found that American children see about 100,000 beer commercials each year.” (Monroe 46) Drinking in our society is the norm, with alcohol consumed by more than 60 percent of the population. (Monroe 17)

Although alcohol is a physically addictive, it is a legal drug. The only laws applying to the control of drinking are minimum age limits, and a blood alcohol limit for driving while drinking, both which vary from state to state. Prohibition in America from 1919 - 1933 was an attempt to control the consumption of alcohol, which was ineffective and only brought the activity underground, and was eventually repealed.

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