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December 12, 1891


JAMA. 1891;XVII(24):923-927. doi:10.1001/jama.1891.02411020021001a

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Any satisfactory or reliable answer to this question must come from a scientific study of the nature of drunkenness. Fortunately, recent advances of science have furnished many facts and data from which to determine this question, apart from personal opinions and theories.

A very curious chapter of psychological literature could be written on the popular theories of the day concerning drunkenness and its curability. Thus persons who believe inebriety to be a vice and sin, are confident that conversion will cure every one. Many so-called gospel temperance advocates claim to have cured thousands of inebriates, and assert with great emphasis that the grace of God through a change of heart will make sober men of all such persons in all conditions of life. Another class believe drunkenness to result from a weak will power, with absence of plan and purpose in life; the great remedy of which is the pledge.

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