Alcohol Abuse as Molar Choice: An Update of a 1982 Proposal

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This article updates a 1982 article (R. E. Vuchinich, 1982) in which an analysis of alcohol abuse that was based on molar behavioral theories of choice was proposed. The original article and subsequent developments in the addiction literature that are related to the choice perspective are summarized. The molar choice view has been incorporated into human and animal research on addictive behaviors other than alcohol abuse, but it has had little impact on the alcohol literature. This lack of influence on alcohol research is attributed to its poor fit with the Zeitgeist of the relevant scientific community rather than to a lack of potential for positive contributions. This tension with the Zeitgeist is created by the contrast between molecular and molar approaches to studying alcohol abuse.

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