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Vol. 25(2), April 1941
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS: New York: Works Publishing Company,
AGAINST ALCOHOL: By Herbert Ludwig Nossen, M.D, New York:
Books, 1940. 246pp.
two books are similar in that both present in great detail
case histories of patients who are suffering from alcoholism.
In this way many old established facts about alcoholism
are brought again to our attention, such as the individual's
early resort to alcohol as a means of solving his problems
or temporizing his major adjustments in life, and the tragic
and dramatic way in which the alcoholic drags down his entire
family with him, to say nothing of the other social and
economic repercussions. Reading these case histories, one
becomes more than ever convinced that the excessive drinking
of alcohol is one of the relatively minor phases of the
individual's whole problem, particularly when one considers
the faulty psychosexual adjustments and general immaturity
and infantile characteristic of the alcoholic
the successful treatment of a person who has become addicted
to alcohol, there must of necessity be a revolutionary change
in the patient's personality. The achievement of more adult
attitudes and the marked turning away from older selfish,
infantile patterns of behaviour must involve an emotional
upheaval. We are all aware that this inner emotional change
is more necessary than a merely intellectual appreciation
of one s difficulty, or what is called intellectual insight.
will be interesting to see how the religious program set
forth by Alcoholics Anonymous will work. It is not entirely
new; it has been tried before.
New York Hospital, Westchester Division,
Plains, New York.