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Books

An ill-waged war against the war on drugs

A review of Johann Hari’s Chasing the Scream finds there are still no clear answers over the benefits of prohibition or legalisation

17 January 2015

9:00 AM

17 January 2015

9:00 AM

Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs Johann Hari

Bloomsbury, pp.390, £18.99

Since drugs became popular, there have been countless books on what to do with them. The most interesting are those of a creative kind by high-profile writers: De Quincey, Baudelaire, Aldous Huxley, Henri Michaux, William Burroughs, Carlos Castaneda. The most useful, so far as social policy is concerned, are those by low-profile operators in the field: scientists, doctors, psychiatrists, social workers, police.

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