How do we understand drug use? How are drugs related to our social worlds? How should drug use be understood, approached and dealt with? Insightful and illuminating, this book successfully discusses drugs in social contexts. In an elegant manner, the authors bring together their different theoretical and practical backgrounds, offering a comprehensive and interdisciplinary introduction that opens up a wide scientific understanding moving beyond cultural myths and presuppositions. Powerful and engaging, this book discusses main questions within the field of psychoactive drugs research, such as: Why do people take drugs? How do we understand moral panics? What is the relationship between drugs and violence? How do people's social positions influence their individual involvement in drug use? This is an invaluable reference source for students on criminology, sociology and social sciences programmes, as well as students and drug service practitioners in social work, social policy and nursing.

Why Do People Take Drugs?

Why do people take drugs?

Explanations for why people take drugs are typically based on individuals’ biological and psychological traits, or are located within the historical, economic, social and cultural contexts in which an individual or social group is situated. There is no singular authoritative reason for drug taking.

In order to reduce drug use or harm from drug use, it is necessary to understand why people take drugs. Explanations can be divided into three broad types: biological, psychological and environmental, with the last including historical, economic, social and cultural factors. Explanations as to why people start taking drugs, known as initiation, may or may not be satisfactory in accounting for why people continue to take drugs or why people become dependent ...

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