Knowledge, embodiment and neo-liberal drug policy

Robin Bunton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Contemporary social policy on drugs is centrally concerned with ensuring the orderly reproduction of the social life in the face of rapid social transformation. This paper examines some recent changes in the relationships of welfare and makes observations about the principles underlying contemporary European drug policy, with a particular concern for governability of drug users. Expert knowledge is argued to play an important role in reconstructing the late-modern human agency through a focus on the intoxicated body. Contemporary drug policy is viewed as part of a set of discourses, norms, social practices and techniques that regulate the quality of the social life of a population, its health and security. These discourses and practices are related to a particular form of rationality specific to neo-libralism found in the UK, in Europe and in other Western societies. While subject to new forms of governance, it is argued that contemporary intoxicated subjectivity also falls under the influence of non specialist, everyday knowledge, often contradicting the rationale of neo-liberal governance of drug use.
Original languageEnglish
JournalContemporary Drug Problems
Volume28
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2001

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drug policy
governability
governance
drug
expert knowledge
discourse
Social Norms
Pharmaceutical Preparations
rationality
subjectivity
drug use
welfare
Public Policy
Drug Users
health
society
Reproduction
Quality of Life
Health
Population

Cite this

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Knowledge, embodiment and neo-liberal drug policy. / Bunton, Robin.

In: Contemporary Drug Problems, Vol. 28, No. 2, 2001.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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