Type
Article
Category
Culture
Drugs

We new puritans: varieties of sobering experience

The status of intoxication is oddly paradoxical. On the one hand, it is a site of social control and docility, rabid consumption and social problems. On the other hand, some claim it escapes precisely the same social control, inducts us into new pleasures, and helps us cope—more or less innocently—with genuine social problems that aren’t about to disappear simply because of a new wave of temperance.