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Home Grown: Marijuana and the Origins of Mexico's War on Drugs

Home Grown: Marijuana and the Origins of Mexico's War on Drugs

by Isaac Campos
Home Grown: Marijuana and the Origins of Mexico's War on Drugs

Home Grown: Marijuana and the Origins of Mexico's War on Drugs

by Isaac Campos


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Historian Isaac Campos combines wide-ranging archival research with the latest scholarship on the social and cultural dimensions of drug-related behavior in this telling of marijuana's remarkable history in Mexico. Introduced in the sixteenth century by the Spanish, cannabis came to Mexico as an industrial fiber and symbol of European empire. But, Campos demonstrates, as it gradually spread to indigenous pharmacopoeias, then prisons and soldiers' barracks, it took on both a Mexican name--marijuana--and identity as a quintessentially "Mexican" drug. A century ago, Mexicans believed that marijuana could instantly trigger madness and violence in its users, and the drug was outlawed nationwide in 1920.

Home Grown thus traces the deep roots of the antidrug ideology and prohibitionist policies that anchor the drug-war violence that engulfs Mexico today. Campos also counters the standard narrative of modern drug wars, which casts global drug prohibition as a sort of informal American cultural colonization. Instead, he argues, Mexican ideas were the foundation for notions of "reefer madness" in the United States. This book is an indispensable guide for anyone who hopes to understand the deep and complex origins of marijuana's controversial place in North American history.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780807882689
Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press
Publication date: 04/23/2012
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: eBook
Pages: 344
Sales rank: 990,200
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

Isaac Campos is assistant professor of history at the University of Cincinnati.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction 1

1 Cannabis and the Psychoactive Riddle 7

2 Cannabis and the Colonial Milieu 39

3 The Discovery of Marijuana in Mexico 67

4 The Place of Marijuana in Mexico, 1846-1920 81

5 Explaining the Missing Counterdiscourse I: The Science of Drugs and Madness 103

6 Explaining the Missing Counterdiscourse II: People, Environments, and Degeneration 123

7 Did Marijuana Really Cause "Madness" and Violence in Mexico? 155

8 National Legislation and the Birth of Mexico's War on Drugs 181

9 Postscript: Mexican Ideas Move North 203

Conclusion 225

Appendix: Newspaper Analysis 233

Notes 241

Bibliography 291

Index 315

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Isaac Campos is, for my money, the best historian at work today on the history of marijuana, and he has written the best book that anyone could read on that topic.—John Charles Chasteen, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

This book is erudite, engaging and extremely relevant. A multidimensional history of marijuana, it examines the drug as an ancient commodity (both 'Oriental' and deeply Mexican), the beliefs about its effects through violent madness, and the prohibitionist obsession that, as Campos argues, Mexico also exported to the United States.—Pablo Piccato, Columbia University

Rigorous, learned, and accessible, Home Grown offers the richest account yet of marijuana's early history in Mexico. It is cultural history at its best—interdisciplinary, materially grounded, deeply researched, and full of discoveries.—Emilio Kouri, University of Chicago

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