In This Chapter
Seeing and classifying alcohols
Seeing reactions that form alcohols
Seeing reactions that convert alcohols into other groups
When most people think of alcohol, they think of ethyl alcohol, the alcohol found in beer and wine. Many people, though, don’t realize that there are many thousands of different alcohols. Ethylene glycol is an alcohol found in antifreeze; methanol is a wood alcohol that can cause blindness if ingested; isopropyl alcohol is an alcohol used for sterilizing cuts. Alcohols, like the alkenes, are an extremely important functional group, not just because they’re found in so many valuable products (and not just beers and wines), but also because they’re so versatile: They’re easily formed and converted into many other functional groups.
In this chapter, I introduce you to the alcohol functional group, show you how to name and classify alcohols, and show you reactions that both make alcohols and convert alcohols into other functional groups.
Alcohols are ...