New Books Network

Danielle Giffort, “Acid Revival: The Psychedelic Renaissance and the Quest for Medical Legitimacy” (U Minnesota Press, 2020)
Psychedelic drugs are making a comeback. In the mid-twentieth century, scientists actively studied the potential of drugs like LSD and psilocybin for treating mental health problems. After a decades-long hiatus, researchers are once again testing how effective these drugs are in relieving symptoms for a wide variety of psychiatric conditions,... Read More
Lesly-Marie Buer, “RX Appalachia: Stories of Treatment and Survival in Rural Kentucky” (Haymarket, 2020)
Using the narratives of women who use(d) drugs, this account challenges popular understandings of Appalachia spread by such pundits as JD Vance by documenting how women, families, and communities cope with generational systems of oppression. Prescription opioids are associated with rising rates of overdose deaths and hepatitis C and HIV... Read More
He Bian, “Know Your Remedies: Pharmacy and Culture in Early Modern China” (Princeton UP, 2020)
He Bian’s new book Know Your Remedies: Pharmacy and Culture in Early Modern China (Princeton University Press, 2020) is a beautiful cultural history of pharmacy in early modern China. This trans-dynastic book looks at how Chinese approaches to knowledge changed during the Ming and Qing as state-commissioned pharmacopeias dwindled, amateur investigations... Read More
Thomas John Lappas, “In League Against King Alcohol” (U Oklahoma Press, 2020)
Many Americans are familiar with the real, but repeatedly stereotyped problem of alcohol abuse in Indian country. Most know about the Prohibition Era and reformers who promoted passage of the Eighteenth Amendment, among them the members of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU). But few people are aware of how... Read More
Casey Schwartz, “Attention: A Love Story” (Pantheon, 2020)
Combining expert storytelling with genuine self-scrutiny, Casey Schwartz details the decade she spend taking Adderall to help her pay attention (or so she thought) and then considers the role of attention in defining our lives as it has been understood by thinkers such as William James, David Foster Wallace, and... Read More
Chris Fleming, “On Drugs” (Giramondo Publishing, 2019)
“After I’d finished my rapid-fire history of self-justification he paused and then said, deadpan and rural-Australian-slow: ‘Right. Ok. So how is that all working out for you?'” On Drugs (Giramondo Publishing, 2019) explores Australian philosopher Chris Fleming’s experience of addiction, which begins when he is a student at the University... Read More
B. Earp and J. Savulescu, “Love Drugs: The Chemical Future of Relationships” (Stanford UP, 2020)
Consider a couple with an infant (or two) whose lives have become so harried and difficult the marriage is falling apart. Would it be ethical for them to take oxytocin to help them renew their emotional bonds, or would this be an unethical evasion of the hard work that keeping... Read More
Laurence Monnais, “The Colonial Life of Pharmaceuticals: Medicines and Modernity in Vietnam” (Cambridge UP, 2019)
Situated at the crossroads between the history of colonialism, of modern Southeast Asia, and of medical pluralism, this history of medicine and health traces the life of pharmaceuticals in Vietnam under French rule. In The Colonial Life of Pharmaceuticals: Medicines and Modernity in Vietnam (Cambridge University Press, 2019), Laurence Monnais... Read More
Lina Britto, “Marijuana Boom: The Rise and Fall of Colombia’s First Drug Paradise” (U California Press, 2020)
In her recently published book Marijuana Boom: The Rise and Fall of Colombia’s First Drug Paradise (University of California Press 2020), Lina Britto tells the forgotten story of the first boom in illicit drugs in the Greater Magdalena region of Colombia. This unknown history, that started in the late 1960s... Read More