A Little More Evidence

This binge drinking thing, this heavy consumption of alcohol:

French doctors warned last month that the country was beginning to adopt the British taste for heavy drinking, with young people fast developing an appetite for the copious consumption of alcohol.

Brittany has always been ahead of that trend, long holding a reputation as the region with the heaviest drinkers.

Might there be something tribal to it? Celts and Anglo Saxons bein more prone to blotting out the horrors of the world with booze? Brittany is the most celtic part of France, after all….

7 comments on “A Little More Evidence

  1. I see far fewer piss-heads in Truro and Falmouth than I do in my home town in NE England, and the ones I do see are far better behaved as well.

  2. Except that Brits are not Celts or Anglo-Saxons – those are foundation myths peddled in the last century or two (give or take).

  3. Hmmn. It’s the Norse who were the real binge drinkers. Having witnessed the modern Swedes (a nation split into teetotallers and absolute pissheads) I’m sure we get our relationship with alcohol from Scandinavia (ancestral home of the Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Danes, etc.).

  4. It’s latitude that makes people binge-drinkers.

    Binge drinking seems to be caused by the same kind of wide-ranging daylight variation as seasonal affective disorder. The further from the equator you go, the more prevalent is binge drinking as a way of consuming alcohol (but the annual average quantity of alchohol taken is not caused by latitude by by price – the cheaper booze is, the more people drink on average, so southern viniculture countries like Spain and Italy and Southern France drink a lot per year – but not by bingeing).

    That’s why Brittany (the most Northern bit of France) is likely to have the biggest problem (the dark, because cloudy, Atlantic skies might also add to the problem).

  5. Britanny isn’t the most northern bit of France. The venerable Bede’s foundation myth is a bit older than two centuries.. According to this-book-I’ve-read-that-makes-me-a-temporary-expert, we’re mostly descended from people who arrived here before farming did.

  6. dearieme – Bede claimed that Britain was a mixture of Anglo-Saxons and Celts? – news to me. What was his definition of Celts (or Saxons come to that)?
    Agreed that he wrote a foundation myth, but not one that was used overmuch for a long period of time. Think you’ll find that the division of Britain into ‘Celts’ and ‘Anglo-Saxons’ was much more recent. Not that you don’t have some sort of point …

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