Why are people often so unpredictable? Why do they do things which can cause great personal harm even when they know this to be the case? Chaos and Intoxication examines the nature of drug and alcohol abuse, seeking to address these and many other enduring questions through a detailed discussion of the chaotic nature of human existence. Chaos and Intoxication discusses ideas and research in three general areas: neurobiology and genetics, cognition and collective action, and chaos and complexity theory. These are brought together to develop a general theory of chaos and human nature. This book will be essential reading for students and researchers in sociology and medical anthropology as well as professionals working in the drug and alcohol support services.