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Written by Erich Goode   
Thursday, 03 March 2011 00:00


Styles of research are as varied as the researchers who practice them. At one pole we have the massively collective enterprise, located in a well-endowed bureau of research, often undertaken by no one in particular and completed by a dozen hands whose involvement bears no relation to the interests or passions of their lives; not uncommonly, the project is conducted for the simple reason that some organization will derive, or thinks it will derive, some practical utility therefrom, and is willing to pay for it. At the other pole, we have the efforts of a lone scholar, be he amateur or professional who imbues every aspect of his work with the stamp of his idiosyncrasies and concerns; with him, the project is undertaken and the research completed not because it was financially supported, but because he was determined to find out what the answers were.
In spite of the fact that this book belongs to the latter of these two types, the debts I have incurred in the effort are manifold. First and foremost among them is the thanks that is due my 204 respondents. It is their book, really, their story, and I hope that I have been faithful to their will and impulse. Certainly this book would not exist without their cooperation and their willingness to risk exposure by talking to me. It is their wish, naturally, to receive my thanks anonymously. Second, the cost of many of the more tedious details of research were covered by the National Institute of Mental Health whose grant (MH-15659) enabled me to pay a part-time research assistant for one year, a job which Miss Judith Rutberg performed with especial efficiency and good cheer. In addition, a Faculty Research Fellowship from the Research Foundation of the State University of New York relieved me of the burden of having to earn a living during the two summers of 1968 and 1969 that it took to write this book. To both granting agencies I am profoundly grateful. The sponsorship of neither indicates any agreement with my conclusions; in fact, insofar as it is possible to detect an official view, that of both agencies would be unfavorable to my own. It is a sign of a healthy society that support may be found for views which vary from the official perspective.
The third debt I owe is to the colleagues and friends who offered useful comments, criticisms, suggestions, and pieces of information. Some of the most helpful of these I received from Jerry Mandel, Eliot Freidson, Andrew Weil, Richard Evans Schultes, John Gagnon, Harvey Farberman, Bill French, Stephen Berger, James Hudson, Stephen Cole, John O'Donnell, Gilbert Geis, Robert Bagnall, Josephine Lopez, Richard Bogg, and David and Nanci Orlow. I was privileged to make use of a manuscript of a forthcoming book by Professor John Kaplan on marijuana use which proved to be extremely useful. Generally, our conclusions separately corroborate one another, but some cross-fertilization did take place. In writing style, my editor, William Gum, has done an heroic job of keeping my untidy prose in reasonably readable form. And finally, my wife, Alice, who tolerated a partial neglect during my productive months, deserves at least one hosanna.
A few sections of this book have appeared in print previously. Chapter 3, "Marijuana and the Politics of Reality," is a slightly revised version of an article of the same name which was published in the June 1969 issue of the Journal of Health and Social Behavior. Chapter 8, "Multiple Drug Use among Marijuana Smokers," is a revised and expanded version of a paper which first appeared in the Summer 1969 issue of Social Problems (published by The Society for the Study of Social Problems). Chapter 10, "Using, Selling, and Dealing Marijuana," appeared, in condensed form, in the Columbia Forum, Winter 1969 as "The Marijuana Market." The section in Chapter 7 on sexual behavior was published in the May 1969 issue of the Evergreen Review, as "Marijuana and Sex." I occasionally quote from my anthology, Marijuana, published by the Atherton Press, 1969. Permission to reprint these works is gratefully acknowledged.

June 1970
Strong's Neck, New York

Last Updated on Thursday, 03 March 2011 18:45

Our valuable member Erich Goode has been with us since Tuesday, 28 December 2010.

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