Check out this passage from a book I'm reading, Terence McKenna's Food of the Gods
Alcohol and the Feminine
The suppression of the feminine has been associated with the use of alcohol since very early times. One manifestation was the restriction of alcohol use to men. According to Lewin, women in ancient Rome were not allowed to drink wine.
When Egnatius Mecenius's wife drank wine from a barrel, he beat her to death. He was later acquitted. Pompilu Faunus had his wife whipped to death because she had drunk his wine. And yet another Roman woman of the gentry was condemned to die of hunger merely because she had opened the cupboard wherein were kept the keys to the wine cellar
Dominator style hatred of women, general sexual ambivalence and anxiety, and alcohol culture conspired to create the peculiarly neurotic approach to sexuality that characterizes European civilization. Gone are the boundary-dissolving hallucinogenic orgies that diminished the ego of the individual and reasserted the values of the extended family and the tribe.
The dominator response to the need to release sexual tension in an ambience of alcohol is the dance hall, the bordello, and the institutionalized expansion of the new underclass--that of the "fallen woman." The prostitute is a convenience for the dominator style, with its fear and disgust of women; alcohol and its social institutions create the social space in which this fascination and disgust can be acted out without responsibility.
This is a difficult subject to address. Alcohol is used by millions of people, both men and women, and I will make no friends by taking the position that alcohol culture is not politically correct. Yet how can we explain the legal toleration for alcohol, the most destructive of all intoxicants, and the almost frenzied efforts to repress nearly all other drugs? Could it not be that we are willing to pay the terrible toll that alcohol extracts because it is allowing us to continue the repressive dominator style that keeps us all infantile and irresponsible participants in a dominator world characterized by the marketing of ungratified sexual fantasy?
I don't really have some all encompassing point in posting this. I just think it's a damn fascinating read.
Hope you all enjoyed your weekend. Back to the sprocket factory.