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Alcoholism During The Great Depression: Article Analysis

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Alcoholism has been a recurring problem in the United states for countless years. The abundance of alcoholism in the country grew during the 1930s due to the effects of the Great Depression. Alcoholism can be triggered by many stressors; one of the most influential being financial hardship. The Great Depression, otherwise known as the longest and deepest economic crisis of the United States was a tremendous catalyst for alcoholism within the country. People were resorting to alcohol as a way to escape from the pain, but little did they know their “escape” creates a trap for their friends, family, and ultimately themselves.
The Great Depression was a dark and hopeless time for all Americans. In An article titled “Sinking Deeper and Deeper”
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Financial and emotional stress, conflicts in the workplace or in the family, and personality traits are all risk factors that could potentially lead an individual to become an alcoholic. Financial stress, specifically unemployment, can cause negative emotions and potentially negative behavior such as alcohol abuse. In an article by Ioana Popovici and Michael French it states, “From a psychological perspective, the financial challenges associated with unemployment could increase tension, anxiety, and family discord, thus leading to increased alcohol use”(2013). Stress within the family, such as divorce, is also a main factor in the development of alcoholism. According to Begoña José and Hans Van Oers in their article titled “Stressors and Alcohol Consumption”, both getting and being divorced is linked to heavy drinking(2000). If alcoholic behavior occurs in a family it is common for the relationships to be weakened and more stress to be created, which can further push the alcoholic into isolation and worsen their drinking behavior. Not only can outside factors have an influence on the occurrence of alcoholism, but certain personality traits can contribute to an individual’s likelihood of becoming an alcoholic. Personality characteristics can determine how a person will react to stressors. One person may abstain from alcohol while another will resort to heavy drinking while…show more content…
Alcoholism can cause emotional disengagement, and the family experiencing negative emotions and withdraws all together (Ackerman, 272). Each member of the family will react differently to the conditions that the alcoholic brings into the home, but there are a few things that can be identified that each member of the family will commonly experience. The spouse of the alcoholic will tend to try and shelter any children and deny any problems that they may face for their sake. They will shun the idea that the alcoholic has a problem and just keep living, but this can cause much more damage than it will save. Even though the spouse tries to ignore the problem, it still remains. Nothing will be solved and things will further worsen. When the spouse tries to deny all of the issues, they ultimately just isolate
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