New Publication: Oxford Uni Press: The Oxford Handbook of Global Drug History

The Blurb

Drugs and their illicit use have long fascinated writers and the public at large. Informed by new interdisciplinary perspectives, a growing number of academically trained historians are now approaching drugs as a wide-open topic for serious research. This Handbook of Global Drug History is the first major attempt by historians of drugs to take stock of the recent progress and directions of this field, utilizing both a global scope and long-term historical perspective. Thirty-five original essays simultaneously survey what is known historically about drugs across the world (in Europe, the Americas, Asia, and Africa) as well as illustrating their historical interconnections.

The use of drugs in human culture goes back millennia with as many unique histories as cultures in which drugs were used. In the early modern world, human relationships with drugs changed, and drugs connected societies through transnational trade. In the nineteenth century, these diverse histories converge in defining the modern “pariah drugs” (among them alcohol, opium, and indigenous hallucinogens) and paved the way for the dramatic twentieth-century rise of both illicit drugs (such as cannabis, heroin, and cocaine) and global prohibitions. Now, in the twenty-first century, we see emerging possibilities for rethinking the global social, health, and policy approaches to drug trafficking and use.

Introduction: A New Global History of Drugs, Paul Gootenberg
Part I. Ancient Drug Worlds
1. Africa: The Forgotten Drug Continent, Neil Carrier
2. Psychoactive Drugs in European Prehistory, Elisa Guerra-Doce
3. Plant Drugs and Shamanism in the Americas, Henrique S. Carneiro
4. Ancient American Civilizations, States, and Drugs, Stacey Schwartzkopf
5. Soma and Drug History in Ancient Asia, Davide Torri
Part II. Precolonial to Colonial Drug Trades and Cultures
6. The New Imperial Drug Trades, 1500-1800, Benjamin Breen
7. Tobacco’s Cultural Shifts as an Early Atlantic Drug, Marcy Norton
8. Forbidden Drugs of the Colonial Americas, Martin Nesvig
9. Mind-Altering Drugs in Premodern India, James McHugh
10. Drugs in Africa from the Slave Trade to Colonialism, Charles Ambler
Part III. The Nineteenth-Century Transition to Dangerous Drugs
11. Dangerous Drugs from Habit to Addiction, Timothy Hickman
12. Middle East Drug Cultures in the Long View, Haggai Ram
13. Colonialism, Consumption, and Drug Control in Asia, James H. Mills
14. The Cultural Biography of Opium in China, Yangwen Zheng
15. French Drug Control from Poison to Degeneration, Sara Black
Part IV. Modern Prohibitions and its Drug Culture Aftermaths
16. The Creation and Impact of Global Drug Prohibitions, David Bewley-Taylor
17. Origins and Outcomes of a US Medicine-Drug Divide, David Herzberg
18. Interwar Drug Scenes and Restrictive Regulation in Britain, Christopher Hallam
19. The Making of Pariah Drugs in Latin America, Isaac Campos
20. Modern Russian and Soviet Drug Suppression, Pavel Vasilyev
21. Germany’s Role in the Modern Global Drug Economy, Robert Stephens
22. Drugs, Nation, and Empire in Japan, 1890s-1950s, Miriam Kingsberg-Kadia
Part V. Illicit Drugs Traffic and the Modern War on Drugs
1—The Global North. The United States and Europe
23. The Globalization of US Drug Enforcement, Mathew R. Pembleton
24. Illicit Drug Cultures in the Postwar United States, Nancy D. Campbell
25. The Impact of the US Drug War on People of Color, Samuel K. Roberts
26. The French Connection as an Illicit Trade Network, Alexandre Marchant
2—The Global South. Latin America, the Middle East, Asia, and Africa
27. Latin American and Caribbean Drug Trafficking Groups, Enrique Desmond Arias
28. Turkey and the Formation of the Global Heroin Trade, Ryan Gingeras
29. Deorientalizing Drugs in the Modern Middle East, Maziyar Ghiabi
30. The Origins of Drug Trafficking Networks in China, Kathryn Meyer
31. The Post-1950s Rise of Illegal Opium in Asia, Pierre-Arnaud Chouvy
32. West Africa and the Modern Global Drug Trades, Gernot Klantschnig
Part VI. Current Dilemmas with Global Illicit Drugs
33.Twenty-First Century Global Drug Trades and Consumption, James Tharin Bradford
34. Global Drug Debates in the Twenty-First Century, Kasia Malinowska-Sempruch and Summer Walker
35. Drugs. Lessons from History?, Virginia Berridge


Paul Gootenberg, SUNY Distinguished Professor of History and Sociology, Stony Brook University



Paul Gootenberg is a Latin Americanist and commodity studies specialist and a pioneer in the field of global drug history. He is SUNY Distinguished Professor of History and Sociology at Stony Brook University in New York and Chair of the Department of History. His books include Andean Cocaine: The Making of a Global Drug, and he is the editor of Cocaine: Global Histories and, with Liliana M. Dávalos, The Origins of Cocaine: Peasant Colonization and Failed Development in the Amazon Andes. He has also published extensively on the economic and social history of nineteenth-century Peru.





Charles Ambler, University of Texas at El Paso
Enrique Desmond Arias, City University of New York
Virginia Berridge, University of London
David Bewley-Taylor, Swansea University
Sara Black, Christopher Newport University
James Tharin Bradford, Babson College
Benjamin Breen, University of California, Santa Cruz.
Nancy D. Campbell, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Isaac Campos, University of Cincinnati
Henrique S. Carneiro, University of São Paulo
Neil Carrier, University of Bristol
Pierre-Arnaud Chouvy, Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS)
Maziyar Ghiabi, University of Exeter
Ryan Gingeras, Naval Postgraduate School
Paul Gootenberg, Stony Brook University
Elisa Guerra-Doce, Universidad de Valladolid, Spain
Christopher Hallam, Swansea University
David Herzberg, University at Buffalo (SUNY)
Timothy A. Hickman, Lancaster University
Miriam Kingsberg-Kadia, University of Colorado Boulder
Gernot Klantschnig, University of Bristol
James McHugh, University of Southern California
Kasia Malinowska, Open Society Foundations
Alexandre Marchant, Institute for Political Social Sciences-ISP (Ecole Normale Supérieure Paris-Saclay)
Kathryn Meyer, Wright State University
James H. Mills, University of Strathclyde
Martin Nesvig, University of Miami
Marcy Norton, University of Pennsylvania
Matthew R. Pembleton, American University.
Haggai Ram, Ben Gurion University
Samuel Kelton Roberts, Columbia University
Stacey Schwartzkopf, Hendrix College
Robert P. Stephens, Virginia Tech
Davide Torri, Sapienza University of Rome
Pavel Vasilyev, Higher School of Economics in St. Petersburg
Summer Walker, Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime
Yangwen Zheng, University of Manchester

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