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By Henry Yeomans

Alcohol intake is usually defined as a modern, worsening and especially British social challenge that calls for radical remedial legislation. proficient through old learn and sociological research, this booklet takes an cutting edge and clean examine how Public attitudes and the law of Alcohol have constructed via time. It argues that, instead of a reaction to developments in intake or damage, ongoing anxieties approximately Alcohol are most sensible understood as 'Hangovers' derived, specifically, from the Victorian interval. The fabricated from a number of years of analysis, this booklet goals to assist readers reconsider their understandings of consuming. As such, it truly is crucial studying for college kids, teachers and a person with a major curiosity in Britain's 'drink problem'.

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Extra resources for Alcohol and Moral Regulation: Public Attitudes, Spirited Measures and Victorian Hangovers

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62 Baggott, Rob, Alcohol, Politics and Social Policy, Aldershot: Gower, 1990;Thom, Dealing with Drink. 63 Baggott, Alcohol, Politics and Social Policy, pp 157-158. 64 Thom, Dealing with Drink. 65 Nicholls, Politics of Alcohol, p 260. 66 Ibid, pp 96-108. 67 Ibid, pp 34-50. See also: Warner, Craze. 68 Ibid, p 255. 69 Harrison, Drink and the Victorians; Shiman, Lilian Lewis, Crusade Against Drink, Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1988. Although Harrison’s timeframe extends only until 1872, his final chapter ‘The End’ comments on the drink problem after that date and into the early years of the 20th century.

The Gin Acts, therefore, are consistent with the dominance of Classical/Christian notions of temperance, which prized moderation and balance in worldly affairs. The second noteworthy point is the apparent consistency of the ‘gin craze’ with moral panic theory (as discussed earlier). Demographic changes and societal transformations, also as discussed earlier, unsettled certain sections of society and gave rise to anxiety that came to be directed at the new drink, gin. Gin-drinkers, especially female drinkers, were identified as ‘folk devils’ and Hogarth and others ‘manned the barricades’ in order to loudly condemn these deviants.

31 Excess in drinking therefore, as with food and sex, was dangerous due to its capacity to produce a multitude of sinful behaviour. The problem, therefore, was gin-drinking and the drunkenness it so readily produced. Hogarth contrasted ‘Gin Lane’ to another print of ‘Beer Street’. ‘Beer Street’ is a more orderly and prosperous vision in which alcohol is enjoyed without the horrific consequences depicted in ‘Gin Lane’. 32 For Hogarth, therefore, the solution to the ‘gin craze’ lay in encouraging the consumption of beer instead of alcoholic spirits.

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