Drugs as Weapons

Drugs as Political Weapons used against the people

By

Karen Eastland

 

Zinberg’s ‘three determinants’ of illicit drug use.

Zinberg’s three determinants of illicit drug use comprise of Drug, Set and Setting. Norman Zinberg pioneered the study for the control of various substances as a function of drug, set and setting. He helped to orientate a public health approach to illicit drugs in general. His work and that of others questioned the perception of illicit drugs as inevitably addicting and destructive.

Zinberg’s Theory:

  • Drug: ‘the pharmacological action of the substance itself’
  • Set: ‘the attitude of the person at time of use, including his personality structure’ (N.B. individual attitudes are influenced by social expectations)
  • Setting: ‘the influence of the physical and social setting within which the use occurs’

Drug: pharmacological action of the substance itself. This describes the mechanisms by which the drug takes effect.

Drugs as Political Weapons used against the people