Psychoactive Substances and the English Language: “Drugs,” Discourses, and Public Policy

  title={Psychoactive Substances and the English Language: “Drugs,” Discourses, and Public Policy},
  author={Kenneth W. Tupper},
  journal={Contemporary Drug Problems},
  pages={461 - 492}
This article undertakes a historical ontology of psychoactive substances, or, in other words, an exploration of the philosophical and political nature of modern categories for plants and chemicals that alter consciousness. Drawing on the ideas of Michel Foucault and Ian Hacking and using the method of critical discourse analysis, I elucidate three distinct contemporary meanings of the English word “drug.” Further, I demonstrate how these meanings of “drug” map onto a modern stereotypology of… Expand
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