Drugs on the Small Screen

Editor’s Note: This post is brought to you by guest contributor Michael Brownrigg. Enjoy! It is often said that we are in the midst of a new golden age of television. A remarkable abundance of compelling stories and indelible characters on the small screen has captivated American audiences, fostering new trends in how and whereContinue reading “Drugs on the Small Screen”

The Forgotten Drug War: Dorothy Sullivan, Informant (Chicago, 1941)

“There was not the least sign of social disorder in 1942” —Daniel Patrick Moynihan, speaking at the 100 Years of Heroin Conference, Yale University, 1998 Dorothy Sullivan was an informant for the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics. On Tuesday, January 22, 1942, she was scheduled to testify in federal court in supportContinue reading “The Forgotten Drug War: Dorothy Sullivan, Informant (Chicago, 1941)”

Old Ideas for a New Era: On Reading Sam Quinones

Sam Quinones and I share an affinity for this startling fact: more Americans now die of drug overdoes than car crashes. I often say this when I am trying to convince someone that it’s important to study the drug wars; Quinones last week used the tidbit in the first paragraph of his New York TimesContinue reading “Old Ideas for a New Era: On Reading Sam Quinones”

Framing Addiction: Heroin Then and Now

At a press conference on June 17, 1971 then President Richard Nixon informed his constituents of a troubling menace. “America’s public enemy number one in the United States is drug abuse.” Nixon also labeled those associated with drug abuse primary enemies of the state. “In order to fight and defeat this enemy,” Nixon charged, “itContinue reading “Framing Addiction: Heroin Then and Now”

“Blacks Declare War on Dope”

When I began researching grassroots responses to crack-cocaine I found myself—albeit naively—both surprised and confused by heavy-handed, aggressive calls for more policing and harsher sentencing from working and middle class black urbanites.  Was this unique to the period?  Did this represent a specific and different response to the marketing invention of crack?  Moreover, I foundContinue reading ““Blacks Declare War on Dope””

The Points Interview: Eric Schneider

This week’s Points Interview is number fifteen in the series, and features Eric Schneider talking smack about Smack: Heroin and the American City.  Eric’s book has just appeared in a paperback edition, so this interview is a timely revisiting of this important study of heroin in postwar urban America.  Eric Schneider is Assistant Dean andContinue reading “The Points Interview: Eric Schneider”

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