As Long As I Know How Im Getting Home..

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Presentation made by Andrew Bengry-Howell about research with young people on their views on alcohol.

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As Long As I Know How Im Getting Home..

  1. 1. As long as I know how I’m getting home then I’m fine” Young people’s understanding and management of the risks associated with social drinking and intoxication. Andrew Bengry-Howell Department of Psychology University of Bath
  2. 2. The Young People & Alcohol Study <ul><li>Branded Consumption & Social Identification: young people and alcohol (2 ½ years) </li></ul><ul><li>ESRC funded project – Identities and Social Action Programme (one of twenty five) </li></ul><ul><li>Joint project – University of Bath; University of Birmingham Business School; Royal Holloway, University of London </li></ul><ul><li>My role – Research Officer (counterpart in Birmingham) </li></ul>http://www.identities.org.uk/
  3. 3. <ul><li>Stage One </li></ul><ul><li>Analysis of alcohol marketing </li></ul><ul><li>216 alcohol advertisements (television, cinema, press and outdoor-billboard ads, Internet pop-ups and advertorials) </li></ul><ul><li>Stage Two </li></ul><ul><li>Empirical study drinking practices </li></ul><ul><li>3 locations: Rowchester; Seatown; Bolston Participants </li></ul><ul><li>Young adults aged 18 -25 (n= 89) </li></ul><ul><li>Gender - 54♀ 35 ♂ </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnicity – 77 white British; 8 Asian; 1 Black African; 1 White/Jamaican; 1 Chinese </li></ul>
  4. 4. Social drinking – A new context <ul><li>Shift from traditional to postmodern alcohol order (post-industrial/clubs, bars- nightlife economy (Brain, 2000) </li></ul><ul><li>Urban regeneration – nightlife economy, branded entertainment spaces/ urban ‘playscapes’/ drinkertainment zones (Chatterton and Holland, 2003) </li></ul><ul><li>Extended licensing hours – ‘24hr drinking’ </li></ul>
  5. 5. Changing Markets Brain, K. (2000) Youth, alcohol and the emergence of the post-modern alcohol order <ul><li>1970s/1980s changing markets demise of traditional pub </li></ul><ul><li>1990s – Rave scene preference for recreational drug use over alcohol </li></ul><ul><li>Threat to Brewing industry – loss of traditional market and new psychoactive youth consumer market </li></ul><ul><li>Re-commodification of alcohol – marketed as recreational drug </li></ul>
  6. 7. A new alcohol order <ul><li>Emergence of a new range of ‘designer’ alcohol products (ice lagers, spirit mixers, white ciders, alcopops and buzz drinks) targeted at young alcohol consumers </li></ul><ul><li>Increase in the strength of alcohol products – direct attempt to compete in psychoactive market/ appeal to psychoactive consumers </li></ul><ul><li>Alcohol products marketed as lifestyle markers/niches in an increasingly fragmented alcohol market </li></ul><ul><li>Emergence of new range of café bars, theme pubs, and club bars -attempt to capture young consumers whose leisure sites were to be found in clubs, cyberspace, and shopping centres. </li></ul>
  7. 8. A Dual Narrative Hayward, K., Hobbs, D. (2007) Beyond the binge in ‘booze Britain’: market-led liminalization and the spectacle of binge drinking <ul><li>Drinkertainment </li></ul><ul><li>Hedonistic consumption </li></ul><ul><li>Alcohol marketing </li></ul><ul><li>Night-time economy </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis - Alcohol as a site of pleasure </li></ul><ul><li>Booze Britain </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis - Alcohol as a site of excitement & excess </li></ul>
  8. 9. A Dual Narrative Hayward, K., Hobbs, D. (2007) Beyond the binge in ‘booze Britain’: market-led liminalization and the spectacle of binge drinking <ul><li>Harm reduction </li></ul><ul><li>Sensible consumption </li></ul><ul><li>Government Alcohol Harm Reduction Strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Know your limits (www.knowyourlimits.gov.uk) </li></ul><ul><li>Industry-led initiatives (e.g. Portman group; Diageo’s ‘choice is yours’ campaign) </li></ul><ul><li>Alcohol as a source of individual and social problems </li></ul>
  9. 11. <ul><li>2004 - government published the Alcohol Harm Reduction Strategy for England </li></ul><ul><li>First cross-government statement on the harm caused by alcohol </li></ul><ul><li>Shared analysis of the problem, and programme of action. </li></ul><ul><li>2006 - Safe. Sensible. Social published. </li></ul><ul><li>Follow-up document - further outlines government's strategy for tackling alcohol misuse and abuse. </li></ul>
  10. 12. Moderate drinking “ Millions of us enjoy drinking alcohol with few, if any, ill effects. Indeed moderate drinking can bring some health benefits. But, increasingly, alcohol misuse by a small minority is causing two major, and largely distinct, problems: on the one hand crime and anti-social behaviour in town and city centres, and on the other harm to health as a result of binge- and chronic drinking.” Prime minister’s forward Alcohol Harm Reduction Strategy, 2004
  11. 13. Alcohol ‘important’ and ‘positive’ <ul><li>“ Alcohol can play an important and positive role in British culture. It is part of our social and family life, and can enhance meal times, special occasions and time spent with friends. However, more needs to be done to promote </li></ul><ul><li>sensible drinking. Excessive alcohol consumption among some sections of the population is a cause for considerable concern – a concern that is shared by both the Government and the general public.” </li></ul>Safe. Sensible. Social. (2006). P.7
  12. 14. Intoxication = Harm <ul><li>Dichotomy – sensible vs harmful drinking </li></ul><ul><li>Adult majority – sensible drinkers differentiated from: </li></ul><ul><li>(i) Young people under 18 who drink alcohol </li></ul><ul><li>(ii) 18–24-year-old binge drinkers </li></ul><ul><li>(iii) Harmful drinkers </li></ul><ul><li>Drinking to intoxication constituted as a harmful risk to self and others </li></ul><ul><li>Young people’s ‘social drunking’ constituted as negative and problematic </li></ul><ul><li>Notion that alcohol can play an ‘important and positive role’, ‘enhance…special occasions and time spent with friends’ (Safe. Sensible. Social. (2006). P. 5) absent/minimised in official discourses around young people’s drinking </li></ul>
  13. 15. For many people in England today, going out to get drunk has become a part of “a good night out” ‘ A significant minority of people who drink – many of whom will not consider that they have a ‘drink problem’ – are putting themselves and others at risk. These include those younger adults who are involved in the very visible displays of drunkenness and antisocial behaviour in city centres, which are widely reported in newspapers… Safe. Sensible. Social. (2006), P. 10.
  14. 16. A Young Person’s perspective
  15. 17. <ul><li>Helen I don’t drink it for the taste I drink it to get drunk </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So for you, the point of drinking is to get drunk? </li></ul><ul><li>Helen Yeah. If I’m going out, not like having a glass of wine at home…I only drink when I go out to like get drunk. It’s not coz I’m thirsty or something </li></ul><ul><li>Sara Yeah </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So it’s purely for the effects </li></ul><ul><li>Helen Yeah </li></ul>Drinking to get drunk ABH So what would you class as drunk? Tim There’s like levels of drunk. When I’m drunk I’m less in control of what I’m doing, but I’m also more relaxed and like don’t worry about things too much. Just kind of more go-with-the-flow.
  16. 18. <ul><li>ABH Is drinking an important part of your social life? </li></ul><ul><li>Alan It doesn’t have to be, but it just is </li></ul><ul><li>Tim Socialising is and drinking comes from socialising </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So socialising, what do you mean by socialising? </li></ul><ul><li>Tim Like going out with your mates, it’s more fun when you’re out with your mates in town, and if you’re in town you normally have a drink </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So the most important thing is the socialising? </li></ul><ul><li>Tim Yeah </li></ul><ul><li>ABH And then the drinking is sort of part of that as well? </li></ul><ul><li>Tim Yeah, the most important thing is socialising and when you have a few drinks it does help you to chill out a bit. </li></ul>Social Drinking
  17. 19. Our participants rarely constituted drinking as a physically harmful or risky practice LONG-TERM PHYSICAL & MENTAL HEALTH RISKS ABSENT FROM YOUNG PEOPLE’S ACCOUNTS
  18. 20. Physical Effects HANGOVER
  19. 21. PHYSICAL EFFECTS ASSOCIATED WITH DRINKING TOO MUCH CONSTITUTED AS AN UNDESIRABLE, BUT SHORT-TERM CONSEQUENCE SICKNESS
  20. 22. <ul><li>ABH Has anybody ever had too much to drink... ? </li></ul><ul><li>Laura There have been times when I’ve been like throwing up coz I’ve drunk too much </li></ul><ul><li>Sara Well it depends on how you mean majorly drunk coz my majorly drunk to them, like say if she said she threw up in the morning, I do that after every night! So it’s not majorly drunk to me, if you know what I mean… </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So you’ve got used to getting… </li></ul><ul><li>Sara Yeah that’s just the effect </li></ul>
  21. 23. <ul><li>ABH Has anybody ever passed out? </li></ul><ul><li>Voices No </li></ul><ul><li>Helen Yes </li></ul><ul><li>ABH You have, so what happened? </li></ul><ul><li>Helen I was like throwing up so they were like putting their fingers down my throat. Well apparently (laughs) </li></ul><ul><li>Maria They were making you throw up (serious tone) </li></ul><ul><li>Helen I was just going to go home apparently, and then the bar maid took my phone off my brother. I was fine, if I hadn’t have had a drip I would have been hanging, but I was fine </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So you were taken to hospital then </li></ul><ul><li>Helen Yeah </li></ul><ul><li>Laura One of my friends had to go and have his stomach pumped </li></ul><ul><li>Maria Was Sara with you? </li></ul><ul><li>Helen They videoed it on my phone </li></ul><ul><li>Michaela Oh, my brother’s seen that </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Oh my goodness, they videoed it on your phone? </li></ul><ul><li>Helen (laughs) yeah, they thought it was hilarious </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So have you seen it then? </li></ul><ul><li>Helen Yeah </li></ul><ul><li>Maria Sara </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So how did you feel? </li></ul><ul><li>Maria Have you ever passed out from drinking </li></ul><ul><li>Sara passed out? </li></ul><ul><li>Helen It was awful. We were in hospital and I was like this having to go down a corridor banging my head on the wall </li></ul><ul><li>Sara Well, apparently I did </li></ul><ul><li>Maria (laughs) How many times? </li></ul><ul><li>Sara (inaudible) </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So how did you feel about seeing the video of yourself? </li></ul><ul><li>Helen I was only just like going like this (pulls face/rolls eyes). It was a bit weird coz I didn’t remember it. </li></ul>
  22. 24. <ul><li>Dan I’ve had a few telling me I’ve had too much to drink (1) but you just tell ‘em where to go and carry on (inaudible words due to laughter) I’ve never personally felt myself like I’ve had too too much to drink other people may tell you that they think I have </li></ul><ul><li>Andrew Right </li></ul><ul><li>Dan But me personally I’ve never had too much to drink except for that time when I had my stomach pumped </li></ul><ul><li>Andrew Okay so that was the only time that really scared you made you think </li></ul><ul><li>Dan Well I woke up is hospital (yeah) so, gotta be something wrong (yeah) there ain’t there? </li></ul>
  23. 25. Social drinking context <ul><li>Hangovers are normalised </li></ul><ul><li>Vomiting is normalised </li></ul><ul><li>Being taken to hospital or knowing someone who has been taken to hospital as a result of drinking to excess is fairly common </li></ul>
  24. 26. Drinking can make you vulnerable
  25. 27. <ul><li>Maria When I drink my barriers go down I find…and I make myself (…) </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Does that mean you’re more trusting then? Is that what do you mean by your barriers going down? </li></ul><ul><li>Laura Any inhibitions you might have sort of go away </li></ul><ul><li>Sara yeah </li></ul><ul><li>Laura Cos that’s what drink does </li></ul><ul><li>Maria When I’m sober, I’m quite good at judging (…) </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So what do you mean when you say your barriers go down? </li></ul><ul><li>Maria Well like, I can judge people quite well, and I’ll know if someone’s trusting or not really. But when I’m drunk I don’t tend to think about it, so it’s more a case of I would probably trust someone who, who could be totally (…) </li></ul><ul><li>Sara yeah </li></ul><ul><li>Maria untrustworthy. You see what I mean, It’s more I let myself be vulnerable and I don’t do that very often </li></ul>
  26. 28. <ul><li>Brian It’s not a very nice place if you’re a girl to be honest, coz I noticed it. Coz I went in [to a nightclub] with two girls last week, and they they did have problems. You’ve got to stick up for them a lot of the time. It’s the only place [Seatown]. Coz if you go to Citycester it’s fair enough if you dance with a girl, and then you’ve pulled her, through dancing with them. But if you’ve got just four blokes, dancing round a girl it’s just like it’s not good . I wouldn’t feel safe to be honest (.) and I would never bring my ex misses to Seatown because of that. </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Really </li></ul><ul><li>Brian Yeah. It’s just (…) I would end up getting into a fight straight away, and it’d be quite hard not to get into a fight in Seatown anyway let alone (…) </li></ul><ul><li>Carl Yeah (.) I’ve been started on loads of times </li></ul>
  27. 29. Social risks <ul><li>Location – geographical, localities, venues etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Company – who/alcohol affects individuals differently </li></ul><ul><li>Getting home - pre-arranged </li></ul><ul><li>Risk management: </li></ul><ul><li>Not getting into trouble whilst intoxicated </li></ul>
  28. 30. The role of the group
  29. 31. Security - Group v isolated individual Belonging – Collectivity/mutuality/bonding Care – Taking responsibility for others A site of security, belonging and care
  30. 32. <ul><li>Vicky Cos there’s so many of us and there’s… I don’t walk anywhere on my own I’m always with a group of people that I know really well, so I don’t, like there nothing would happen to me, cos they’re all with me and my Dad makes sure they’d walk me to my front door. </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Okay </li></ul><ul><li>Vicky So I’m alright. If I was going out on my own, I wouldn’t like if it was me on my own. I wouldn’t go and like, if I had to walk on my own or something I’d phone my dad, or get a taxi or something like that I wouldn’t walk on my own </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Okay </li></ul><ul><li>Nikki No when I’m with people I’m not scared </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Right </li></ul><ul><li>Nikki Just on my own I don’t really like it </li></ul>
  31. 33. <ul><li>Rose I’d say that drinking is like counting the bruises the next day thing </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Really (laughter) </li></ul><ul><li>Rose Where did I get that one (laughter) </li></ul><ul><li>Julie That’s really scary that if you don’t remember what you’ve done, that’s really scary </li></ul><ul><li>Anne If we’re in a big group of us </li></ul><ul><li>Rose Exactly </li></ul><ul><li>Anne We wouldn’t wouldn’t ever let any anything happen </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Right </li></ul><ul><li>Rose That’s why we always go out in such a big group, because we always know that there’ll be someone that doesn’t drink, because there’s always somebody, who if, coz there’s always (…) we all keep a watchful eye on em </li></ul>
  32. 34. <ul><li>Joe I think it’s good sometimes to have a mate who goes out, who is not affected by alcohol and that. Coz he’s like a voice of good reason or something. So say you’re going a bit over the top and he’ll come along and he’s like that and “you’re a bit over the top mate, calm it down a bit” </li></ul><ul><li>Callum Usually, usually though if you say that, they’ll go “fuck off” (laughter) </li></ul><ul><li>Joe …because when you’re drunk you tend to get a bit, some people tend to get a bit lairy. I know I’ve (…) I’ve been and (…) a person who’s like sober or like only had a couple of drinks, they can like diffuse the situation better than you could. Coz you’d be just giving it all that </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So you think they could be helpful </li></ul><ul><li>Joe Yeah. Stopping me getting my head kicked in </li></ul>
  33. 35. Gendered forms of risk management
  34. 36. <ul><li>Planning nights out : </li></ul><ul><li>Where you go, who you’re with, how many of you, who’s not drinking </li></ul><ul><li>How you’re going to get home </li></ul><ul><li>Parents/pre-booked taxi </li></ul><ul><li>Intoxication – making yourself vulnerable (unspoken risks – sexual assault) </li></ul><ul><li>Level of planning determines how drunk you get </li></ul>Young Women
  35. 37. Young Men <ul><li>Unplanned ‘adventures’: </li></ul><ul><li>last minute arrangements </li></ul><ul><li>Less emphasis on getting home: </li></ul><ul><li>Walk, crash at mates house, occasionally sleeping rough </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis: </li></ul><ul><li>Role of mates - Looking out for each other </li></ul><ul><li>Handling yourself - looking after girlfriends </li></ul><ul><li>Intoxication – having a laugh/some react badly - keeping out of trouble </li></ul><ul><li>Money or intention (individual/collective) to get ‘mullered’ determines how drunk you get </li></ul>
  36. 38. Summary
  37. 39. Drinking context <ul><li>Night-time economy </li></ul><ul><li>Demise of traditional drinking venues, rise of night-time economy/introduction of extended licensing hours etc. </li></ul>
  38. 40. Alcohol marketing <ul><li>Commercial marketing </li></ul><ul><li>Young people niche market </li></ul><ul><li>Branded alcoholic drinks – high alcohol content/marketed as lifestyle markers </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis on social benefits/pleasures associated with alcohol </li></ul><ul><li>Individual consumers reminded to drink responsibly </li></ul><ul><li>Social marketing Adults – sensible drinkers/Young people - problem drinkers Alcohol constituted as a source of individual and social problems </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis on harms and risks associated with alcohol Individual consumers encouraged to monitor units – drink moderately </li></ul><ul><li>Commercial marketing message resonates more strongly with young people’s constitution of their experiences of drinking than social marketing message . </li></ul>
  39. 41. Young people’s perspective <ul><li>Functional approach to alcohol – means to intoxication </li></ul><ul><li>Socialising associated with alcohol consumption and getting drunk </li></ul>Getting drunk is fun
  40. 42. Intoxication facilitates & consolidates social bonds Functional approach to alcohol – means to intoxication Socialising associated with alcohol consumption and getting drunk Young people’s perspective
  41. 43. <ul><li>Getting drunk – harmless activity </li></ul><ul><li>Long-term risks to health etc. absent from accounts </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis on immediate effects/short-term consequences </li></ul><ul><li>Risks associated with being intoxicated in public settings – vulnerable - personal safety/threat from others </li></ul>Young people’s perspective
  42. 44. <ul><li>Normative context for social drinking </li></ul><ul><li>Drinking - a group activity (solitary drinking indicative of a drink problems) </li></ul><ul><li>Security – drinking in group – strategy for managing/limiting risk </li></ul><ul><li>Gendered forms of risk management </li></ul><ul><li>Young women – planning/group/getting home </li></ul><ul><li>Young men – looking out for yourself/ your mates </li></ul>The social group
  43. 45. Critique from within <ul><li>Carl I think an all-night pub’d be a really bad idea in Seatown, coz it’s just not the kind of place where you can have it. 24 hours (.) like Citycester is (.) Citycester is like 24 hours now isn’t it? and Citycester’s pretty like, it can get a bit mental sometimes. In Seatown, It’d be crap, like there’d be one place and then you’d have like three people there till like five in the morning and then they’d eventually come out and pass out outside the place </li></ul><ul><li>Voices (laughter) </li></ul><ul><li>Mike Some people they would just drink all night if they could </li></ul><ul><li>ABH Do you think they would? </li></ul><ul><li>Carl Yeah. No, coz I’ve got mates who literally, if they didn’t get kicked of a pub they’d stay there until they just pass out in a pool of their own vomit, and you will get people like that in there and like, I don’t know, you get it anywhere. </li></ul><ul><li>ABH So why do you think that is? </li></ul><ul><li>Carl Because people are addicted to alcohol, aren’t they? </li></ul><ul><li>ABH You think that’s what it is? </li></ul><ul><li>Carl Yeah…I reckon like loads of people have, like it’s really common to have just an alcohol problem and not realise it. Like when you’re really young as well. Loads of my mates just drink way too much. Far too much and they’re fat . They’re really fat now as well and um they don’t even realise it. It’s stupid. </li></ul>
  44. 46. The end

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