In Memoriam: Ernie Kurtz, 1935-2015

All serious historians of alcohol and drugs will be saddened to hear of the passing, last week, of Ernest (“Ernie”) Kurtz, the first and foremost historian of Alcoholics Anonymous. Kurtz’s commanding Not-God: a History of Alcoholics Anonymous was published in 1979 by Hazelden.  Though Ernie often talked about how AA history in the decades sinceContinue reading “In Memoriam: Ernie Kurtz, 1935-2015”

Being Outed

Editor’s Note:   Readers will recognized “Matthew J. Raphael” as the pen name of well-known literary scholar who authored the outstanding biography Bill W. and Mr. Wilson; he recently reviewed the documentary Bill W. for Points.  Here he muses on the poor fit between academic values, Amazon.com, and AA’s 11th Tradition. When Bill W. and Mr.Continue reading “Being Outed”

Call for Proposals: The Drugs, Security and Democracy (DSD) Program

The Drugs, Security and Democracy (DSD) Program provides support for research across a variety of disciplines—anthropology, sociology, criminology, history, political science, economics, journalism, public policy, legal studies, public health, and other related fields—to create a network of scholars interested in developing alternative approaches to drug policy and fostering strategies that address the growth of transnationalContinue reading “Call for Proposals: The Drugs, Security and Democracy (DSD) Program”

Call for Participants: BackStory Radio Seeks Questions on Drugs History

Editor’s Note: Okay, Points readers– show that analogue crew over at NPR what you’ve got. Always wanted to be on the radio?  Here’s your chance!  BackStory, a history-focused public radio show, is tackling drugs.  They’re looking for input from historians and non-historians alike.  Here’s the scoop: BackStory is a weekly, hour-long show hosted by threeContinue reading “Call for Participants: BackStory Radio Seeks Questions on Drugs History”

David Foster Wallace: Life, Writing, Addiction, and Recovery

Editor’s Note:  As of this post, Points will be going on a “holiday hiatus” schedule– a light posting regime that reflects the editorial crew’s commitment to spending the holidays doing life rather than history.  We’ll resume regular posting at the end of January 2013.  I should also note that this will be my last postContinue reading “David Foster Wallace: Life, Writing, Addiction, and Recovery”

The Wire at Ten– Jonathan Simon, Wiring in the Empirical

Editor’s note– We round out our consideration of “The Wire at Ten” with a post by legal, historical, and policy studies heavyweight Jonathan Simon.  Simon is the Adrian Kragen Professor of Law at UC Berkeley, where he teaches classes on criminal law and socio-legal studies; he is also the author of multitudinous law review andContinue reading “The Wire at Ten– Jonathan Simon, Wiring in the Empirical”

Call for Proposals: “Challenging Punishment: Race, Public Health, and the War on Drugs”

Editor’s Note: last summer, Points ran a call for participants in a working group focused on “Challenging Punishment”; this conference is a related but separate event, with its own deadlines. Friday 4 October and Saturday 5 October, 2013 will see the Challenging Punishment Conference, a two-day critical dialogue among scholars and researchers; health and legalContinue reading “Call for Proposals: “Challenging Punishment: Race, Public Health, and the War on Drugs””

Conferenece Report: Cannabis Roots: The Hidden History of Marijuana

Editor’s Note: Guest Blogger Chris Bennet takes us inside the Cannabis Roots Conference held this November in Vancouver, Canada — complete with video from each session! When thinking of the history of marijuana, most people’s minds go back to the hippy era of the 60s and the pot smoking flower-children whose peace and love ideals haveContinue reading “Conferenece Report: Cannabis Roots: The Hidden History of Marijuana”

The Wire at Ten– Jack Halberstam, “The King Stay the King”

Editor’s Note: “The Wire at Ten” has thus far featured posts on drugs and the “human ecology” of the show (Stan Corkin, Cincinnati), its logic of “subordination” (Sergio Campos, Miami), and the way it departs form the televisual crime genre norms laid out in the 1970s and ’80s (Carlo Rotella, Boston College).  Today we takeContinue reading “The Wire at Ten– Jack Halberstam, “The King Stay the King””

Java Coca and the Dutch Narcotics Industry: An Almost Forgotten 20th C. History of Drugs Story

Editor’s Note: Today we welcome the return of guest blogger  Toine Pieters, Descartes Institute for the History and Philosophy of the Sciences, Utrecht University, who wrote memorably about the use of “sewage epidemiology” as a tool for tracking drug use a few weeks ago.  His post today is slightly more conventional, but no less cutting-edge.Continue reading “Java Coca and the Dutch Narcotics Industry: An Almost Forgotten 20th C. History of Drugs Story”

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