"By presenting what is known, as wellas frank, non-moralistic discussion of is-sues posed by those for whom LSD hasattractions, the Wesleyan symposiummakes a valuable contribution."
—ScienceWe need a sober assessment of what weknow about LSD—what we knowconfidently, what we know less thanconfidently and what we do not know at all. And we need to secure this information interms that the intelligent layman canunderstand.
This statement, made at the opening ofWesleyan University's symposium onLSD in March of 1967, was the keynoteof the conference, the papers and discus-sions of which make up this book. Thesepapers, by nine experts whose sole pur-pose is to discover and to set forth thetruth, present what
are knownabout LSD.The book is arranged in three sections,each followed by a transcript of thetape-recorded floor discussion. The firstsection concerns LSD and the individualand considers in detail the motivationsof those who use the drug, the conse-quences of its use and its therapeuticpotential. The second section discussesfully the enormous impact of the drugon our society in three principal areas—religion, law and medicine. The finalsection concerns the substance itself, itspharmacological properties and itsneurophysiological and behavioraleffects.
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The contributors to this volume includea number of the most highly respectedresearchers and workers in the field ofpsychedelics: Frank Barron of theInstitute of Personality Assessment andResearch of the University of California;Neil L. Chayet of the Law-MedicineInstitute of Boston University; Nicholas J. Giarman of the Medical School of YaleUniversity; Dr. Murray E. Jarvik and Dr.Dominick P. Purpura of the AlbertEinstein College of Medicine; Milton H. Joffe of the United States Bureau ofDrug Abuse Control; Dr. Albert A.Kurland of Spring Grove State Hospitalin Baltimore; Dr. Donald B. Louria ofBellevue Hospital in New York City;and Dr. Walter N. Pahnke of theMassachusetts Mental Health Center.Several of these men point out that themass media have publicized a folkloreof LSD, a chic amalgam of anecdote andhalf-truth that is seductive and danger-ously misleading to many people,especially the young. To counter thisfolklore and to determine how societyand the individual can best make use ofthe unique qualities of the psychedelicdrugs, we need the "hard" data ofobjective scientists. And we need men ofgood will and true social concern todiscuss the problems openly. This wasthe purpose of the symposium, as it isthe purpose of this book.
WESLEYAN UNIVERSITY PRESSMiddletown, Connecticut
Book jacket flaps