A quintessential overview of the newest trend in alcohol abuse. Binge drinking isn't only for frat boys anymore, as younger drinkers are more apt to participate in this form of over drinking. Alcohol has been around since 2000 BC and throughout time it has been used and abused. The Eighteenth Amendment tried to curtail the use of alcohol to no avail. People drink to celebrate, to forget their troubles or to fit into social situations. In 1930 a Yale University researcher, E. Morton Jellinek began to study problem drinking and concluded that it wasn't because of a moral weakness but more of a disease of dependence. Binge drinking does not go hand in hand with alcoholism. Many people who binge drink are often the occasional social drinker. In 1994 Henry Wechsler, a social psychologist from Harvard University coined the term "binge drinking" as consuming large amounts of alcohol in a short period of time. The drinker is ultimately put at risk, as well as those around them. Five drinks for men and four drinks for women during a short timeframe were defined as "binge drinking." The writer shares stories about young lives cut short because of a onetime descent into binge drinking. Decisions are altered whenever alcohol is in play. Drunk driving, violence and casual sex are just a few of the consequences. A timeline presnts the history of alcohol, and essential facts are found in the glossary, index, additional resources and source notes. Reviewer: Toni Jourdan
STEPHANIE WATSON is an independent scholar who has written and contributed to numerous works, including World of Genetics and Science and Its Times. She is the author of The Urinary System, and coauthor of The Endocrine System, both in Greenwood's Human Body Systems series.