RE: Drug Gaze

The question wether drugs should be legalized or not is a political one. But
the question why people use them and why others reject them is a
philosophical one. The answeres to these questions might not be simple and
equally valable for everyone. To say it's because of addiction is not
enough, because also nonaddictive substabces are considered dangerous drugs.
To say that's because of health reasons is also not true, because most white
collar jobs and topsport are more dangerous to health then many drugs. Our
society puts a lot of effort to reduce the unhealthy influences of work
(stress, r.s.i., heartproblems), we could also try to reduce the negative
side effects of drug (ab)use. We could develop a kind of art of drug
enjoyment, instead of a science of drugs (like an ars erotice v.s. a
scientia sexualis). A genealogy of the concept of 'drug' would be
interesting I think.
So could it be that our bodies absorp a lot of conflicting disciplines and
for some of us, who're a bit sensitive or have been exposed more then
others, the use of 'drugs' is a way to maintain discipline. Our
individualist society thus blames the indivdual druguser for it's own
defects and contradictions. It's also vlear theat soem drugs are very
populair among circles of outcasts. Maybe they're seeking compensation, so
maybe our society misuses their bodies first by taking away a necessary
physical feeling of satisfaction, or even for the feeling of being
appreciatated. The war on drugs is the more interesting because it's not
effective, drugs are probably more populair in societies where they are
forbidden then in others. Maybe it's like an allergical reaction on the
social level: society is fighting itself. The drug is a kind of natural
antidote which is mistaken for a disease. The disease may have everything to
do with a slavemoral and the fear for enjoyment.


| And, Josh, one of the many things that Foucault is intersted in is how
| power is dispersed across various different areas of culture and through
| different practices, even those of everyday life - and we fellow
| scholars do have an everyday life, or do we not? Unless we'd like to
| see the university as a clearly-defined space, an instituition separated
| from 'the rest of society' - according to the way I understand
| Foucault's work, you can find elements regarding 'the body politic' in
| these kind of discussion, since, at the end of the day, the politics of
| everyday life is what all of us experience and practice - even
| unconsciously - in our lives. If you find the anti-drug or
| pro-legalisation campaigns 'equally ridiculous' (equally to whom? I'd
| appreciate to find out the ridiculous element in my arguments), I have
| nothing to say. Regarding what you say about 'binary polarities', I
| agree and I do not side myself with any of the polarities, neither do I
| believe that cannabis should be legalised and left out to be bought by
| everyone and at any time - but since this is totally irrelevant to a
| list on Foucault, I'll stop here. I guess that what I'm against is
| people who do seem to reinforce these polarities (as in 'normal society'
| versus 'brain-damaged pot adicts [sic]') and who seem to speak about
| things they know very few things about and in a manner that is totally
| incongruent to a Foucault mailing list.
| Best regards
| Aris
| Josh Strawn wrote:
| >this is all so out of hand--i've been subscribing to
| >this list for over a year and i have been totally
| >silent, using it as a resource for 'listening in' on
| >conversation regarding foucault by folks who are
| >considerably more knowledgable than i. the postings
| >about 'pot' or 'cannabis'--whatever you want to call
| >it--have served mainly to show how out of touch with
| >the subject their authors are. i dislike 'pot', i
| >don't smoke it--but i have before and i have
| >acquintances who indulge. sure it's psychologically
| >addictive, sure some people smoke it with tobacco.
| >most people DONT smoke pot with tobacco. please, my
| >fellow scholars, go back to talking about foucault's
| >sense of state, the body politic or what have you, and
| >drop this irrelevant, uninforamtive ranting. leave it
| >for the anti-drug and pro-legalization binary
| >polarities to duke it out with their equally
| >ridiculous arguments and skewed statistics...
| >
| >
| >--- francisfarrell <frankfarrell@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
| >
| >
| >>First of all, I think using the word 'pot' makes the
| >>postings seems very
| >>dated!
| >>
| >>I don't know if smoking cannabis damages the brain.
| >>I know that most people
| >>smoke it mixed with tobacco, so lung damage could
| >>well be taking place. I
| >>suspect that although cannabis may not be addictive,
| >>people develop nicotine
| >>addiction as a by-product. I wonder how many people
| >>go through a phase of
| >>smoking cannabis, perhaps as youths, leave off but
| >>find they have developed
| >>a cigarette habit. The tobacco companies must relish
| >>every move that
| >>increases the number of people smoking cannabis.
| >>
| >>Regards,
| >>
| >>Frank
| >>
| >>
| >>
| >>
| >
| >
| >__________________________________
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| >
| >
| >
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