Alcohol in America

Drinking Practices and Problems

Edited by Walter B. Clark & Michael E. Hilton

Series: SUNY series in New Social Studies on Alcohol and Drugs
Paperback : 9780791406960, 395 pages, September 1991
Hardcover : 9780791406953, 395 pages, September 1991

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Table of contents



1. Introduction
Walter B. Clark


2. Some Comments on Methods
Walter B. Clark

3. Measuring Alcohol Consumption in the U. S.: Methods and Rationales
Robin Room

4. A Note on Measuring Drinking Problems in the 1984 National Alcohol Survey
Michael E. Hilton


5. The Demographic Distribution of Drinking Patterns in 1984
Michael E. Hilton

6. The Demographic Distribution of Drinking Problems in 1984
Michael E. Hilton


7. Changes in American Drinking Patterns and Problems, 1967 - 1984
Michael E. Hilton and Walter B. Clark

8. Trends in U. S. Drinking Patterns: Further Evidence from the Past Twenty Years
Michael E. Hilton

9. Trends in Drinking Problems and Attitudes in the U. S., 1979 - 1984
Michael E. Hilton

10. Cultural Changes in Drinking and Trends in Alcohol Problems Indicators: Recent U. S. Experience
Robin Room


11. Conceptions of Alcohol Problems
Walter B. Clark

12. The U. S. General Population's Experiences with Responses to Alcohol Problems
Robin Room

13. Demographic Characteristics and the Frequency of Heavey Drinking as Predictors of Self-Reported Drinking Problems
Michael E. Hilton

14. The Effect of Average Daily Consumption and Frequency of Intoxication on the Occurrence of Dependence Symptoms and Alcohol-Related Problems
Thomas C. Harford, Bridget F. Grant and Deborah S. Hasin

15. Higher and Lower Levels of Self-Reported Problems among Heavy Drinkers
Michael E. Hilton


16. Introduction to Drinking Contexts
Walter B. Clark

17. Regional Diversity in U. S. Drinking Practices
Michael E. Hilton

18. The Presence of Alcohol in Four Social Situations: Survey Results from 1964 and 1984
Michael E. Hilton


19. Findings from the 1984 National Survey of Alcohol Use among U. S. Hispanics
Raul Caetano

20. Drinking Patterns in the Black Populations
Denise Herd


21. One Approach to Oversampling Blacks and Hispanics: The National Alcohol Survey
Robert L. Santos






This book is a definitive reference work on American drinking, presenting results that are not based on the skewed and captive samples found in hospital treatment settings, but rather on the general population. This means that the study addresses not only problem drinkers and drinking problems but also documents in rich detail the much more common drinking patterns of the vast majority of Americans. Special attention is given, for the first time in such surveys, to drinking patterns among Blacks and Hispanics.

Walter B. Clark is Senior Scientist with the Alcohol Research Group in Berkeley, California. Michael E. Hilton is Staff Fellow at the United States National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.


"It provides, to my knowledge, the best combination of an up-to-date, comprehensive, carefully analyzed overview of American drinking patterns and alcohol-related problems. " — Norman Giesbrecht, Addiction Research Foundation, Toronto

"Alcohol consumption is a major aspect of American social and cultural life, and alcohol abuse is our costliest and most widespread drug problem. This book deals systematically with so many aspects of drinking behavior (patterns and trends, causes, contexts, and consequences) that it will be an important source of information to scholars, researchers, and graduate students; to people involved in the treatment and prevention of alcohol-related problems; and to people involved in formulating and implementing public policies about drug and alcohol use.

"This book is a unique and extremely valuable explanation of current knowledge about U. S. alcohol consumption. It will immediately become a standard reference for research on social aspects of alcohol consumption. " — Richard W. Wilsnack, University of North Dakota School of Medicine