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“Nation of Drunkards,” a history of alcohol in America, with Matthew R. Pembleton, adjunct lecturer at American University, fellow at the DC Policy Center, and author ofContaining Addiction: The Federal Bureau of Narcotics and the Origins of America’s Global Drug War.
The United States has often been described as a “nation of drunkards.” The (often excessive) consumption of alcohol is as American as apple pie, but so, too, are intense arguments about the harm and impact of drink on American life.
Drinking patterns and public attitudes toward alcohol and intoxication have changed dramatically over time, in ways that can teach us a lot about American culture and society. The same nation that once consumed an average of five to seven gallons of liquor per person per year also embarked on the hopeless quest of Prohibition and launched a War on Drugs.
How do we make sense of these contradictions in the American character? Let Profs and Pints show you American history through the saloon door and the bottom of a bottle, and learn about the rise, fall, and return of alcohol in America.
The talk will take you from the Whiskey Rebellion to the Craft Beer Revolution. You'll revisit George Washington and the rise of the distilling industry, Johnny Appleseed and the ubiquity of hard cider, the Market Revolution and the Great Whiskey Binge, nativism and the Lager Beer Riots, Temperance and the women’s movement, Prohibition, and the renaissance of American brewing.
Do you love to learn? Would you enjoy hearing scholars discuss fascinating topics in a setting where you can ask questions and be around people who share your interests? Profs and Pints is here for you!
Profs and Pints brings college faculty members into bars, cafés, company offices, and other off-campus venues to share their knowledge. They speak on subjects of broad interest, including local history, their region’s environment, emerging trends in business or politics, and the ideas and innovations transforming our society and culture. In addition, Profs and Pints instructors offer practical instruction that improves lives. They can teach skills such as how to write persuasively, plant a garden, tend to mind and body, or plan for retirement.
Profs and Pints offers you all of this without asking that you apply for admission, pay steep tuition, or worry about quizzes or grades. At most, you might need to buy a modestly priced ticket to get in the door. Depending on where the event is staged, you may be able to order tasty beers, delicious meals, or hot espresso to go with all of that knowledge you’ll take in.
You won’t earn college credits but you’ll leave knowing more.
Learning with Profs and Pints: It’s a bright idea.