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Attention-Allocation Model

The attention-allocation model (AAM) posits that alcohol intoxication makes thinking difficult—in psychological terms, alcohol intoxication impairs controlled, effortful cognitive processing, resulting in a narrowing of attention to information that is most noticeable and easy to process. Claude Steele and Robert Josephs coined the term alcohol myopia in 1990 to describe this narrowing or “myopic” effect alcohol has on attention. Because the information a person can attend to at any given moment in time depends on the unique characteristics of each individual and his or her environment, the AAM provides an explanation for the enormous variability in behavior seen across drinkers, and within a given drinker across different settings. Alcohol consumption has an immensely variable influence on behavior, from seemingly opposite outcomes of either relieving ...

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