Dangerous Harvest: Drug Plants and the Transformation of Indigenous Landscapes

Overview


Throughout history almost all traditional indigenous societies have used psychoactive substances derived from plants in religious and healing rituals. Once such plants are adopted by outsiders for profane use, the often impoverished peasant farmers who grow them are faced with a life of extreme poverty or are lured by the prospect of a very lucrative cash crop with a steady market. Before long, their cultural and physical landscape is drastically altered. The purpose of this book is to explore this issue from a ...
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Overview


Throughout history almost all traditional indigenous societies have used psychoactive substances derived from plants in religious and healing rituals. Once such plants are adopted by outsiders for profane use, the often impoverished peasant farmers who grow them are faced with a life of extreme poverty or are lured by the prospect of a very lucrative cash crop with a steady market. Before long, their cultural and physical landscape is drastically altered. The purpose of this book is to explore this issue from a variety of perspectives, ranging from opium production in Afghanistan and Pakistan to peyote gardens in south Texas.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Informative and well written...the reader cannot help but be impressed by what a powerful influence the international drug trade has had on international relations, political and military struggles, environmental health and security, and economic well-being in many contexts."--The Geographic Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195143195
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 4/28/2004
  • Pages: 336
  • Lexile: 1450L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.40 (w) x 6.30 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael K. Steinberg is Adjunct Professor of Geography at Louisiana State University and Cultural Biogeographer with the U.S.D.A.'s National Plant Data Center. Dr. Steinberg specializes in cultural and political ecology of indigenous peoples in Central America. His research has appeared in journals such as Geographical Review, Economic Botany, and The Professional Geographer. He is also the editor of Cultural and Physical Expositions, Geographical Studies in the Southern United States and Latin America, published by Geoscience Publications, and Forests, Fields, and Fish: Politicized Indigenous Landscapes. He received his Ph.D. from Louisiana State University in geography in 1999.

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Table of Contents

Contributors
Introduction 3
1 Drugs, moral geographies, and indigenous peoples : some initial mappings and central issues 11
2 The stimulus of prohibition : a critical history of the global narcotics trade 24
3 Opium and the people of Laos 115
4 Opium production in Afghanistan and Pakistan 133
5 The State and the ongoing struggle over coca in Bolivia : legitimacy, hegemony, and the exercise of power 153
6 The marijuana milpa : agricultural adaptations in a postsubsistence Maya landscape in Southern Belize 167
7 Sacred and profane uses of the cactus Lophophora Williamsii from the South Texas Peyote Gardens 182
8 Desert traffic : the dynamics of the drug trade in Northwestern Mexico 209
9 Cannabis in colonial India : production, state intervention, and resistance in the late nineteenth-century Bengali landscape 221
10 Suppressing opium and "reforming" minorities : antidrug campaigns in ethnic communities in the early People's Republic of China 232
11 Environmental and social consequences of coca/cocaine in Peru : policy alternatives and a research agenda 249
12 Modern use and environmental impact of the Kava plant in remote Oceania 274
13 The global nexus of drug cultivation 294
Index 313
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