YOUNG PEOPLE AND DRUGS by Dr. Arthur Cain

YOUNG PEOPLE AND DRUGS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

After all the recent attempts to discuss drug use in reasonable tones, this shrill polemic is startling, more for its manner than its message. Psychologist Cain is a man of experience (marijuana and heroin for test purposes, and an uninduced religious ecstasy) who prefers non-chemical paths to happiness. His theories about drug users--based on personal observation--are expressed in such absolute terms that it is impossible to be indifferent (and in the absence of evidence, impossible to refute): that the hippie subculture is comprised of drugs and dirt; that both hippies and Hell's Angels have an abnormal fear of physical pain; that the two groups are alike in the homeliness of their constituents; that today's teenager population is ""a highly neurotic, immature society"" where both alcohol and marijuana should be forbidden. This sort of denunciation--constantly interrupting the factual material (chemistry and physiology) as well as the more interpretive material on sociology, psychology and religious implications--seems most likely to tickle those who agree, convulse those who disagree, and leave the people who really need information--the uncertain Young People--in a quandary. It's an unambiguous package of sarcasm and superiority, too pushy for most palates.

Pub Date: July 30th, 1969
Publisher: Putnam