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Crystal Ford Mrs. Harper English 1102 08 September 2010

Drugs in America: Sociology, Economics, and Politics by Ansley Hamid The purpose of the book according to author is to get people thinking about how and why drugs have been seen as problematic in our world today. Ansley Hamid is the author of the book Drugs In America: Sociology, Economics, and Politics. Ansley Hamid is an Anthropology Professor at John Jay College in New York. He delves into some of the radical issues, in America, such as how sex is a commodity in exchange for the drug crack. The author¶s audience is for sociologists, politicians, and economists. In analyzing the Hamid¶s text it is evident that he uses some of the rhetorical triangle to appeal to his audience. He uses minor premise in that he is specific in relating to how drugs have affected society today. The author does not necessarily try to persuade the audience to adopt a single point of view, even those of his opinion. He uses logos to convince the audience about how drugs have been implemented in our society today. In the chapter about the history of drugs, the author talks about how the modernity of drugs came about. Again the author is using logos. He is not trying to make heartfelt statement or trying to convince you of his credibility in the writing of the history of drugs. Drugs are controversial and have been around since the Middle Ages. The triumphant emergence of a market-based economy caused the Europeans to gradually spread their own restless expanding civilization outward over the entire planet into an interdependent web of production and consumption in America today (Amin, 1974; Wallerstein, 1974). Modern society had noticed the replacement of

tobacco in various forms. tea was favored by the emerging industrial bourgeois in England. agrarian economy to bourgeois. One can infer that drugs were looked at as more as a social thing. Eventually. did drugs become associated with making profits. When the spices began to spread to the middle class. After. The ability to purchase and exhibit spices in preparation of them served as an important indicator of the wealth of and prestige in medieval Europe. Columbus discovered America. This came about because the spices were for the upwardly mobile men. An example of this is the western European consumption of intoxicating substances in the medieval era was linked with causing changes in labor. Only later. The author quotes that the appetite for spices created the environment for the drugs. but the routes used at the time proved not to be useful in supplying the huge demand in Europe. and consuming intoxicating substances was associated with status. who were of middle class structure were formed to finance the costly and difficult trading expeditions to Asia. it was not seen as . and leisure. The use of spices eventually spread to the middle class. growing devalued and ³common´ in the process. class structure. which caused the changes from feudal. The nobility were known for their fondness of ³oriental´ spices. spices crystallized the new global society and economy. Importers. Ansley goes on to describe how the need for intoxicants or stimulants began to change the class structure into one for monetary gain. chocolate by the leisure class. and alcohol by the working masses. and eventually to the industrial economy. At first. Because status items at the time were in short supply. the rich western Europeans were after exotic ³oriental´ and tropical goods. than as a profit or monetary thing. The substitution modified the human-drug interaction. and coffee. and then the lower class people. and they only had access to the spices.Ford 2 traditional social classes and the relationships among them. the craving for spices prompted Columbus and others to seek a maritime route to India.

Cubans. or the main drug dealer may pass his ³work´ down to his other workers to take over a particular territory. A modern day example of this is drug dealers in New York vying over drug territories. but used as medicine and in food preparation. Drugs in history go a long way back to being able to make a profit. At the street level. and liquors. alcohol disrupted preexisting social controls and proved drunkenness. Jamaicans. The production and sale of alcohol sustained the economy. beer. One person¶s territory may be making more profit. When alcohol was introduced to Native Americans. the Rastafarians ceded their dominance over the drug market to African American and Puerto Rican youth. violence. He goes on to state that it will be helpful to the audience to know the brief biographies of the drugs that have concerned the public. and internecine warfare. the author talks about the most common types of drugs in America today. and Colombians vied for control over the drug¶s distribution. Alcohol was the norm for European Americans. y Alcohol. Alcohol was the only drug of European and nontropical origin. Since colonial times. than the other territories. betrayal. greed.Ford 3 profitable.Alcohol was the first of the many drugs that Americans would eventually find problematic. In discussing the history of drugs. Alcohol was used not only recreationally. just like what is happening in America today. Congress passed . Americans have used all kinds of psychoactive substances and have revised their relationship to them continuously in the course of national development. An example from the author¶s viewpoint is in the mid-1980s. Thus drugs are basically used t make a profit and living. it was native in wine. they lost value. The author goes on to state that in 1791. the sales of Colombian cocaine took over marijuana. Because the spices began to spread.

alcohol has been responsible for incidents such as murders. and President Washington was obliged in 1794 to send federal troops into the state of Pennsylvania to crush the Whiskey Rebellion that the farmers and distillers had staged in response. y Marijuana-The next most common drug used in the United States that dates back to the Spanish conquistadors. As America became industrialized in the early 20th century. and a wide range of health problems. alcohol¶s usefulness it was still excessive drinking was condemned. and is ever mindful of the period of Prohibition in the 1920s and is determined that it will not be repealed. contributes to the major political parties. 1980. In the 1980s the popularity of malt liquors became known among inner city youths and ³microbrews´ or specialty beers in the early 1990s among affluent European Americans. rapes. reprehensible behaviors on campus. Bennett. Since repeal of alcohol. such as being 21 years and older and not driving drunk.indica is the smaller of the two. The Spanish conquistadors brought two plants. 1995). to the New World (Abel. domestic violence. but getting in drunk in public or driving while drunk there are serious consequences. is alcohol is legal to drink if one is 21 years old and older. alcohol¶s dwindling appeal. where they had been native to India and China. Osborn & Osborn. The alcohol lobby in the United States is well organized. A modern day example of this.Ford 4 an excise tax on whiskey. attitudes against drunkenness and alcohol itself stiffened and resulted in Prohibition. Despite. which were cannabis indica and cannabis sativa from the Old World. and thrives in a . Americans have willingly obeyed the numerous regulations on the legal sale of alcohol. C. or public drinking. Despite.

C. 1972). that is better adapted to heat and rain. Haley. Kandel. it was grown in America for hempen fibers. marijuana use among young European Americans climbed from 3% of the 18-25 year age cohort to over 50% (Gitlin. and eventually the Indians themselves. bushy lowland plant. are grown from strains of C. The author goes on to state that marijuana¶s popularity was replaced by smokable cocaine in the 1980s. The author gives an example of this by stating that while the cultivation and use of marijuana were routinized among (mostly Africans) Jamaican peasants. In the 1970s marijuana enjoyed a worldwide popularity that was cultivated everywhere from hothouses in Alaska to the windowsills in New York City. In the 1950s. and seeds.Ford 5 cooler climate. Marijuana smoking for recreational purposes or a religious sacrament and it use as a food were brought in the mid1840s o the Americans via the Caribbean by Indian laborers. 1997). In the mid-1960s. 1997a. 1970. cloths. African ±American jazz musicians and artists favorite it. 1987. 1988). Morton. The author goes on to state that Americans ignored the tinctures and other medicinal preparations of the plant described in European pharmacopeias. 1980. Goode. and a fledgling distribution system was formed (Brown. The potent modern sinsemilla varietals meaning (³without seed.´ or intensively cultivated marijuana.and it¶s use began to rise again in the 1990s (Hamid et al. indica. 1965. Campaigns in the United States are seeking to promote marijuana¶s health .sativa is a tall. required careful tending and separation of female plants). Until the 20th century. Weller. they were rejected by Africans of Trinidad. 1965). 1916. who had became indentured to replace emaciated African labor in the regions sugar cane plantations (Hamid.

or cocaine is known as a . 1890/1974). The destiny of the marijuana plant may change in t he near future.000 feet.000 to 10. The marijuana plant is likely to evolve further in the United States.medical practitioners in Europe and America lauded it as a miracle drug. suppliers offered the drug in a variety of forms that it was nearly impossible for an American to avoid its use. some marijuana is described with patients with glaucoma. The author goes on to state the United States was spurred by the medical profession. Marijuana use was medicalized in 1996 by the states of Arizona and California . y Cocaine-The author writes about the history of cocaine known as Erythroxylon coca. and has been cultivated for thousands of years by local Native American populations who chewed leaves to relieve fatigue. A modern day example was cocaine found in coca cola drinks. and hunger (Antonil 1978. and it was prescribed to treat a wide variety of medical problems (Courtwright. and various items. Freud. Coca chewing also functioned as an integrative institution of the beleaguered indigenous society and religion. By the 1880s. 1982). particularly its use for medical reasons. For example in the United States. Cocaine was found in elixirs. 1985). Although the federal government has declared their intention to prosecute physicians who prescribe it.Ford 6 benefits. cold. inhalants. extracts. when alkaloid cocaine was isolated by Albert Neimann in a German laboratory (Grinapoon & Bakalar. which grows in the moist and woody regions of the eastern Andes at altitudes of 2. Californians and Arizonans are seeking methods for making it available for those who need it. Coca and its derivatives were introduced to European societies in the 1860s.

blacks and white lost in a sort of dreamy intoxication. (The author quotes the author Courtwright by stating that a woman reporter peeked into the room and spied a dozen of lower-class prostitutes. pg. The smoking cocaine epidemic of 1981-1991 is the first to have occurred in the United States and in the world. monocausal explanation of social problems----drugs ³cause´ crime. By the late 1980s. though it is hardly noticeable. which made it a luxury drug among the wealthy. cultural. better informed perspective that emphasizes the numerous interrelated social. As the prohibitionist movement gained strength. The author¶s aim is to replace a simplistic. It was the scarce supply of and very expensiveness of the drug. Hamid. abusive or neglectful parenting. There are other drugs mentioned in the book but these three are the most common ones that Americans have used in history and even today. and political processes in modern society that impinge upon humandrug interactions. heroin. sexual promiscuity. economic. dangerously emancipated women. addiction. and tobacco. Other drugs are inhalants. Through the long history of cocaine. overdose. cocaine has been problematic in our society because of the lost of our Americans through violence.12). and neighborhood deterioration with--. minority neighborhoods in major American cities. articles appeared in the newspapers which drew attention to a sinister use of the drug. cigarettes. The author believes that combining good sense with survey methodology with qualitative techniques will be useful to arrive at the best possible estimates of drug use in America. and murder.Ford 7 stimulant some forms of cocaine can be found in coffee.a more comprehensive . violence. . cocaine misuse had afflicted at least a million souls in low-income.

³No.edu/engines/epi570. September 2010. 570: A Visit To a Crack House´. May/June 1991 10.Ford 8 REFERENCES Hamid. Ansley. Aspen Publishers.htm> . 1998) Lienhard. Drugs in America: Sociology. John H.uh. <http://www. and Politics ³Historical Overview. Economics. Engine of Our Integrity.

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