Download A history of drugs : drugs and freedom in the liberal age by Toby Seddon PDF

By Toby Seddon

'A historical past of gear' information the historical past of the connection among medications and freedom over the past two hundred years; hence irritating and unravelling the 'naturalness' of the 'drug question', because it lines the a number of and heterogeneous traces of improvement out of which it's been assembled. advent : medicinal drugs, freedom and liberalism -- A conceptual map : freedom, the "will" and dependancy -- Opium, law and classical liberalism : the drugstore act 1868 -- medications, prohibition and welfarism : the harmful medications act 1920 -- medications, possibility and neo-liberalism : the medicine act 2005 -- medicines as a rules and governance challenge -- Conclusions : medicinal drugs and freedom within the liberal age

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G. Christison, 1854) as well as medical ones. Problematizing opium II: public health This rise of public health during the nineteenth century is another important strand of the genealogy, representing perhaps the principal dimension of the problematization of opium. In most historical accounts, the public-health movement has been viewed as a consequence of the process of industrialization in the first decades of the nineteenth century. Dorothy Porter (1999: 112), for example, argues that the creation of an interventionist publichealth system was a response to the environmental threats to health posed by the squalor and overcrowding of the new urban centres of population.

A psychiatric condition? A failure to cope with life? A result of poverty and disadvantage? 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.

However, as Fraser and Gordon (1994) argue in an imaginative and insightful article, the term ‘dependence’ has a very long history. In its pre-industrial guise, it referred to a relationship of subordination: While the term did not mean precisely unfree, its context was a social order in which subjection, not citizenship was the norm. Independence connoted unusual privilege and superiority, as in freedom from labor. (Fraser and Gordon, 1994: 313, emphases in original) So buried in the word ‘dependence’ is this pre-industrial concept of freedom, revolving around what Patterson (1991) would have described as a medieval understanding of freedom as privilege, as discussed above.

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