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Fox, R. (1960). The Alcohol Language: By Mark Keller and John R. Seeley. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1958. 32 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 29:121-122.

(1960). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 29:121-122

The Alcohol Language: By Mark Keller and John R. Seeley. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1958. 32 pp.

Review by:
Ruth Fox

STATISTICS OF ALCOHOL USE AND ALCOHOLISM IN CANADA 1871-1956. Compiled by Robert E. Popham and Wolfgang Schmidt, et al. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1958. 155 pp.

Two recent books, small but important in the field of alcoholism, have come from the Alcoholism Research Foundation of Ontario. The first, The Alcohol Language, is an eminently successful attempt to bring some long needed measure of order into the terminology of this condition of alcoholism that is now recognized as a disease entity which ranks as the fourth largest public health problem, affecting an estimated five million persons in the United States. Since so much is still unknown about the cause and treatment of alcoholism, it will require the coördinated efforts of biochemists, geneticists, neurologists, psychiatrists, psychologists, sociologists, anthropologists and others to understand it, to treat the victims, and to prevent its increase. Because of the complexity of the disease, the ambiguous terminology of the past has needed to be replaced by exact definitions of terms. Of five hundred terms found in the literature of alcohol, some sixty of the most important are carefully defined in what the authors call a 'dictionary of usage' in which the trouble-giving definitions are found as well as those considered to be more exact. Certainly this little book should be consulted frequently and thoughtfully by workers in the many scientific disciplines who need to understand each other if they wish to solve this very great problem. Until its contents have been fixed in the minds of all of us, it should be kept at one's elbow.


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