Menace or medicine? Anthropological perspectives on the self administration of high potency cannabis in the UK

Waldstein, Anna (2010) Menace or medicine? Anthropological perspectives on the self administration of high potency cannabis in the UK. Drugs and Alcohol Today, 10 (3). pp. 37-43. ISSN 1745-9265. (Full text available)

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http://dx.doi.org/10.5042/daat.2010.0469

Abstract

Domestically produced, high potency cannabis (often referred to as “skunk” in mainstream British media) has become increasingly widespread in the UK. This paper considers whether this trend reflects increased awareness of and desire for medical marijuana. Determining whether cannabis is a drug or a medicine depends on its objective physiological effects, which may vary from one individual to another, as well as how and why those effects are experienced. Medicinal and mind-altering effects of cannabis are not easily separable for many cannabis users. The medicinal use of cannabis in Britain has waxed and waned since the early 19th century. Currently the UK is on the cutting edge of the development of cannabis-based pharmaceuticals, but criminalizes people who choose to self-medicate with herbal cannabis. We are living in time of political, social and economic uncertainty, which threatens the stability of national healthcare systems. The broad ranging effects of cannabis on the human body and mind, combined with its relatively easy cultivation, make it a sustainable and effective alternative medicine. Research is needed, especially on the experiences of people who use cannabis to benefit, enrich and even prolong their lives.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > Social and Cultural Anthropology
Depositing User: Anna Waldstein
Date Deposited: 29 Jun 2011 16:50
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2011 11:20
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/27844 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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