Intoxication and intoxicated behaviour in contemporary European cultures

Myths, realities and the implications for policy, (prevention) practice and research


B. Thom




Eisenbach-Stangl, I. & Thom, B. (2009). Intoxication and Intoxicated Behaviour in Contemporary European Cultures: Myths, Realities and the Implications for Policy, (Prevention) Practice and Research. Policy Brief 2/2009. Vienna: European Centre.


Over recent years, media and policy attention have highlightened 'binge' drinking as a social problem which had spread across Europe. Viewed predominantly as a youth problem, the focus of concern has been on young people's drinking and on the behaviours and harms associated with it in relation to public health, public safety and public order.

This emphasis has neglected examination of the wider issue of 'intoxication' and 'intoxicated behaviours'. But to understand youthful binge drinking and associated behaviours, and to find ways of intervening to prevent or reduce harm, it is necessary to understand the prevailing concept(s) of acceptable and unacceptable forms of intoxication and intoxicated behaviours and its/their wider social and cultural determinants.