Understanding Marijuana: A New Look at the Scientific Evidence

Paperback | March 25, 2005

byMitch Earleywine

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Marijuana is the world's most popular illicit drug, with hundreds of millions of regular users worldwide. One in three Americans has smoked pot at least once. The Drug Enforcement Agency estimates that Americans smoke five million pounds of marijuana each year. And yet marijuana remainslargely misunderstood by both its advocates and its detractors. To some, marijuana is an insidious "stepping-stone" drug, enticing the inexperienced and paving the way to the inevitable abuse of harder drugs. To others, medical marijuana is an organic means of easing the discomfort or stimulating the appetite of the gravely ill. Others still view marijuana,like alcohol, as a largely harmless indulgence, dangerous only when used immoderately. All sides of the debate have appropriated the scientific evidence on marijuana to satisfy their claims. What then are we to make of these conflicting portrayals of a drug with historical origins dating back to8,000 B.C.?Understanding Marijuana examines the biological, psychological, and societal impact of this controversial substance. What are the effects, for mind and body, of long-term use? Are smokers of marijuana more likely than non-users to abuse cocaine and heroine? What effect has the increasing potency ofmarijuana in recent years had on users and on use? Does our current legal policy toward marijuana make sense? Earleywine separates science from opinion to show how marijuana defies easy dichotomies. Tracing the medical and political debates surrounding marijuana in a balanced, objective fashion,this book will be the definitive primer on our most controversial and widely used illicit substance.

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From the Publisher

Marijuana is the world's most popular illicit drug, with hundreds of millions of regular users worldwide. One in three Americans has smoked pot at least once. The Drug Enforcement Agency estimates that Americans smoke five million pounds of marijuana each year. And yet marijuana remainslargely misunderstood by both its advocates and it...

Mitch Earleywine, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Clinical Science and Director of Clinical Training in Psychology at the University of Southern California. He has received nine teaching awards for his courses on drugs and human behavior and is a leading researcher in psychology and addictions. He is Associate Editor of The Behavior T...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:344 pages, 5.98 × 9.02 × 1.1 inPublished:March 25, 2005Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195182952

ISBN - 13:9780195182958

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Table of Contents

1. Highlights in the History of Cannabis2. Cannabis Use and Misuse3. Stepping Stones, Gateways, and the Prevention of Drug Problems4. Marijuana's Impact on Thought and Memory5. Subjective Effects6. Cannabis Pharmacology7. Marijuana's Health Effects8. Medical Marijuana9. Social Problems: Amotivational Syndrome, Reckless Driving, and Aggression10. Law and Policy11. Treatment for Marijuana Problems12. Final Thoughts

Editorial Reviews

"Earleywine ... has contributed a well-balanced, up-to-date, and scholarly overview of this controversial and illegal controlled substance ... and the scientific evidence of its biological, psychological, and societal impacts. ... Earleywine's highly readable book clears up some commonmarijuana myths and helps readers to better evaluate and understand the current cannabis debate. This volume will be a welcome addition to college and university libraries."--Choice