It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
History - Drugs & Alcohol: Getting Started - Background Information
A special topic guide for researching drugs and alcohol from a historical perspective
Often times using a reference book to begin your research can be the most helpful starting point to explore a topic or find some contextual information. However, even if you have some knowledge of your topic, a reference book could be used to discover leads to more in-depth resources.
You can find general, subject-specific, or data-focused reference books like some of these below searching InfoKat Discovery.
Here is a short sample list of reference e-books to get you started.
This encyclopedia provides a multidisciplinary perspective on the various aspects of the American drug problem, including the drugs themselves, the actions taken in attempts to curb or stop the drug trade, the efforts at intervention and treatment of those individuals affected by drug use, and the cultural and economic effects of drug use in the United States.
Examining the history of alcohol worldwide, this encyclopedia goes beyond the historical lens to examine alcohol as a cultural and social phenomenon, used both for good and for ill. Alcohol has many purposes and significance, it has become a strong part of cultures around the world as usage ranges from religious purposes, to a simple toast, to sealing a business deal.
A two-volume survey of how tobacco became one of the most important commodities in the history of world trade and the source of one of the biggest public health concerns in modern history. Presents 136 alphabetically arranged entries on all aspects of tobacco. Illustrated with graphs, charts, drawings and photographs.
Another resource for learning more about a topic is the Gale Virtual Reference Library. It is a collection of full-text encyclopedias, almanacs, and specialized reference sources. Additional helpful online reference resources include:
Access to all Oxfords Dictionaries, Companions, and Encyclopedias in one place, covering 25 different subject areas, with new titles and editions added throughout the year. Includes continuous updating and exclusive online-only content. Over 2 million entries in almost 450 titles.
A research database designed to explore authoritative introductory literature the vast specialized encyclopedia collection within your own library. It provides researchers with the most reliable introductions to your research topic, simplifying the process of finding just the right book or journal article.
Digital Humanities Librarian & Academic Liaison to History