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By Toby Seddon

Why are a few psychoactive ingredients considered as ‘dangerous drugs’, to be managed by means of the felony legislation inside of an international prohibition regime, when others – from alcohol and tobacco, via to these we name ‘medicines’ – are noticeable and controlled very otherwise? A historical past of gear strains a family tree of the development and governance of the ‘drug challenge’ over the last 2 hundred years, calling into query essentially the most primary principles during this box: from ‘addiction’ to the very thought of ‘drugs’. on the middle of the publication is the declare that it was once with the emergence within the overdue eighteenth century of recent liberal capitalism, with its special emphasis on freedom, that our issues concerning the intake of a few of those elements started to grow. And, certainly, notions of freedom, unfastened will and accountability stay significant to the drug query this present day. Pursuing an leading edge inter-disciplinary method, A background of substances offers an educated and insightful account of the origins of latest drug coverage. it is going to be crucial interpreting for college kids and lecturers operating in legislation, criminology, sociology, social coverage, heritage and political technological know-how.

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Extra resources for A History of Drugs: Drugs and Freedom in the Liberal Age

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The action of different drugs on the body became a growing medical specialism. Professor Christison, the principal expert involved in the Earl of Mar case, was one of the pioneers, his 1829 Treatise on Poisons proving to be influential. In this context, we might understand then the Pharmacy Act of 1868 as part of this public-health drive to reduce poisoning, in a similar way to the arsenic legislation in 1851. So, Parssinen (1983: 68), for example, describes the 1868 Act as ‘one of the smaller triumphs of the larger [public-health] campaign’.

G. g. taxes or tolls) (Bauman, 1988: 9–10, 33–35). In others words, medieval freedom concerned the particular rights attached to persons which granted them either exclusive privileges or else exemptions from duties to which they would otherwise be bound (Patterson, 1991: 363–75). Sometimes these were derived from personal relationships with monarchs or other powerful figures (Innes, 2006). We might say then that freedom during the Middle Ages was characterized by privilege – to be free was to be given ‘special’ treatment in terms of rights and responsibilities (Patterson, 1991: 364).

A consequence of reckless consumption of dangerous substances? Or is it simply a chimera? 2 ‘Master’ changes in conceptions of the ‘will’ in liberal government Phase One: Classical liberalism Phase Two: Welfare liberalism Phase Three: Neo-liberalism 1. Nature of ‘will’ Will as volition or capacity to choose how to act Will as an attribute of ‘normal’ citizens 2. Governmental role To create conditions in which the will can be exercised To identify citizens with defective characters and attempt to repair their will Will as mechanism for realizing individual preferences To encourage and facilitate the autonomous will of active citizens 26 A History of Drugs I will not attempt here to adjudicate between the psychologists, psychiatrists, neuroscientists and other self-styled addiction experts.

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