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This is the second in a series of books intended to review and evaluate the most popular and influential explanations for gambling and the many research studies that have been conducted to confirm or refute them. This book focuses on the contributions of specialists in the social sciences, most of whom are convinced that gambling is a consequence of the social or subcultural environment in which the gambler lives. To further the understanding of why people gamble, investigators went to places where gambling occurred and spent time among and interacted with the gamblers. Some attended Gamblers Anonymous meetings and others became participant observers in gambling establishments by becoming employed as roulette croupiers or card dealers. Topics covered include the gambler’s point of view, the researcher’s point of view, social structure, economics, statistical tests of earlier ideas, special populations, ‘‘armchair’’ theories, gambling and the public, problem correlates, and risk factors. In addition, a critique of the qualitative and quantitative studies involving survey research methods and interview research methods is given that provides theoretical explanations for why people gamble. Numerous results from geographical surveys are provided, as well as tables that examine the research of problem gambling.


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