Festival Season is upon us, and the Health Service Executive (HSE) in Ireland recently launched a new drug campaign targeted at festival-goers. The design and imagery of the Reduce the Harms at Festivals campaign takes a playful approach. Borrowing heavily from 1970s animation, the campaign features images of anthropomorphized objects and colourful cartoons; a smiling first aid kit high-fives a heart in platform shoes patched up with a plaster (‘Medics are your Mates’); a snail in festival style staples – bum bag and bucket hat (‘Start Low and Go Slow’).
“Cultures of Intoxication: Contextualising Alcohol and Drug Use, Past & Present” Conference Report
Editor’s Note: Today’s conference report comes from Dr. Alice Mauger of the Centre for the History of Medicine in Ireland, School of History, University College Dublin. Dr. Mauger also organized the event.
“Cultures of Intoxication: Contextualising Alcohol and Drug Use, Past & Present”, University College Dublin, Ireland, 7-8 February 2020 – Conference Report
University College Dublin was delighted to welcome twenty-five delegates to the UCD Humanities Institute on 7 and 8 February 2020 to take part in “Cultures of Intoxication: Contextualising Alcohol and Drug Use, Past & Present”. Sponsored by the Wellcome Trust, this event featured speakers from institutions in Canada, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and the US.
The conference was part of my three-year Wellcome Trust research fellowship on “Alcohol, Medicine & Irish Society, c. 1890-1970”. Now in its final month, this project has explored social, cultural and political perceptions of excessive drinking and alcohol addiction in Ireland, especially the degree of influence the “drunken Irish” stereotype has had on medical responses to alcoholism.
Historical Documents of Temperance, Post-Pat’s Day Guilt and Remorse Edition
Spending a quiet St. Patrick’s Day with my parents and, as many of us do at a certain age, shamelessly rifling their old personal documents, I came across this item of interest.
It is my father’s Pioneer Pledge, his oath at the age of sixteen to “abstain for life,” albeit with some language about “reparations” that may or may not apply to future “sins of intemperance” as well as past ones. He took it in 1960, near the historical peak of membership in the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association of the Sacred Heart, the movement founded in 1898 by the Jesuit priest James A. Cullen.