By Paul Gootenberg
Illuminating a hidden and engaging bankruptcy within the heritage of globalization, Paul Gootenberg chronicles the increase of 1 of the main astonishing and now unlawful Latin American exports: cocaine. Gootenberg lines cocaine's background from its origins as a clinical commodity within the 19th century to its repression through the early 20th century and its dramatic reemergence as a bootleg reliable after global conflict II. Connecting the tale of the drug's variations is a number of individuals, items, and procedures: Sigmund Freud, Coca-Cola, and Pablo Escobar all make appearances, exemplifying the worldwide affects that experience formed the historical past of cocaine. yet Gootenberg decenters the commonplace tale to discover the jobs performed by way of hitherto imprecise yet very important Andean actors as well—for instance, the Peruvian pharmacist who constructed the strategies for refining cocaine on an commercial scale and the creators of the unique drug-smuggling networks that a long time later will be taken over through Colombian traffickers. Andean Cocaine proves essential to realizing probably the most vexing social dilemmas of the overdue twentieth-century Americas: the yankee cocaine epidemic of the Eighties and, in its wake, the likely unending U.S. drug struggle within the Andes.
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Additional resources for Andean Cocaine: The Making of a Global Drug
These American “eclectics,” who ran their own medical schools, were specially attracted to coca leaf after 1860, with a host of specific indications. For the most part, coca served as a broad antidote to the era’s culturally diagnosed “neurasthenia”— so-called American nervousness (the title of neurologist George Beard’s 1881 best-seller) — the rampant exhaustion and melancholic disorders of sedentary, civilized brain workers and their sensitive, anxiety-ridden women. Neurasthenia resembled what Continentals termed “hysteria,” though today it would likely be thought of as a psychosomatic neurosis.
But Wöhler’s curiosity was piqued, especially after Mantegazza’s florid field reports of the 1850s, and he decided the problem was finding good coca. So in 1858 Wöhler contracted Dr. Karl Scherzer, the trade specialist of the Austrian frigate Novara, to fetch the freshest coca available explicitly for 23 Imagining Coca, Discovering Cocaine chemical analysis prior to the Novara’s scientific mission to the Pacific sponsored by Maximilian. 10 Wöhler, in the German professorial fashion, delegated the job to his talented and short-lived doctoral assistant, Albert Niemann, who had already studied Spruce’s coca specimens in Berlin.
7 Indeed, by the mid-sixteenth century, a full-fledged colonial “coca debate” was raging in the immense Viceroyalty of Peru. Powerful ecclesiastic “prohibitionists” (like Gerónimo de Loayza, archbishop of Lima; missionary Antonio Zuñiga; or the viceroy Marqués de Cañete, 1555–60), trying to outlaw its ruthless tropical production or root out its spreading use among Indian commoners, argued against relative pragmatists (like royal envoy Juan Matienzo, viceroy Francisco Toledo, and a few Jesuit allies such as José de Acosta and Bernabé Cobo), who, in cocaine rising 20 intricate countermoves, attributed some powers to coca and accepted the inevitability of a limited Spanish coca trade.
Andean Cocaine: The Making of a Global Drug by Paul Gootenberg