Analysis Of Hillbilly Elegy 'Chasing Heroin'

1690 Words 7 Pages
On the other side of what could be considered polar opposites, Chasing Heroin asserts that the government is part to blame for the huge skyrocket in the number of people gaining addiction to opioid drugs, which is not a crime, but a disease that the affected cannot control, and therefore, should be responsible for finding alternative ways of dealing with the drug addiction epidemic other that putting the affected behind bars only to let them out, have them continue to use, and repeat the never-ending cycle. Towards the beginning the documentary, Sam Quinones, author of Dreamland, made a statement: "We went from a country that used almost no opiate painkillers, like in the '50s and '60s, to being a country where we used 83 percent of the world's …show more content…
Since Hillbilly Elegy is not only about mental illness and addiction, the approach that it takes to engage an assorted audience is immensely different from the approach that Chasing Heroin, a documentary specifically dedicated to addiction and mental illness. What Hillbilly Elegy argues about is a culture that encourages addiction and mental illness among many other destructive ailments and therefore, Vance is required to use more commonplaces to reach multiple different types of audiences. Chasing Heroin only focuses on addiction and mental illness, thus using less commonplaces to reach a vast audience. The largest disagreement seems to lie in who should be blamed for addiction. Hillbilly Elegy takes a more emotional approach as for who's to blame because Vance's blame is based all on personal experience due to the book being a memoir. However, Chasing Heroin takes a more logical approach seeing as it is a documentary, and the main purpose of an informative documentary is to provide factual information on a specific topic. Based on Vance's personal experience with having his mother struggle with addiction and knowing that other factors contributed to her addiction, he puts all of the blame in the lifestyle that hillbilly culture staunchly teaches. Chasing Heroin's argument that government is to blame is based on one simple "if, then" syllogism which is: If loose regulation is the cause of opioid addiction, and if the government is responsible for creating opioid regulations, then the government is the cause of opioid addiction. On the other hand, Hillbilly Elegy and Chasing Heroin weren't all that different when it came to delivering their

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