Absinthe: Frequently Asked Questions and Some Attempted Answers

| August 20, 2001

Absinthe: Frequently Asked Questions and Some Attempted Answers, John Baggott, Web site review by Al Paulson
Could a potent emerald liquor have had something to do with the lush paintings of the French Impressionists and the imagery of the symbolist poets? Did this same elixir cause Van Gogh's ear-severing fits of madness or inspire Paul Verlaine to paint himself green and ride, naked, through the streets of Paris? Indeed, the legendary spirit absinthe has been credited for such great fits of creativity, as well as blamed for an eventual decline into dementia.John Baggott's Web site provides comprehensive and clinical information on the pharmacology and legality of 'the green fairy'. The site is well-researched and footnoted, and sheds some light on the culture and mythology surrounding this liquor that was outlawed in the United States in 1912.
--Al Paulson
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Still Life with Absinthe: The tipple of choice for fin-de-siecle decadents, John Moore, Utne Reader #87

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