Kleanthis Grivas
Translation: Deborah Whitehouse

Introduction - Cannabis: From Benediction to Condemnation

Chapter One - The Identity of Cannabis
1. The plant
2. The uses of cannabis
3. The extent of use
4. Active ingredients
5. Derivatives of cannabis
6. Absorption, breakdown, and excretion
7. Doses and users
8. Effects of use
9. Tolerance and dependence
10. Psychological dependence

Chapter Two - Historical Data
1. Antiquity
2. Middle Ages
3. Modern times

Chapter Three - The Age of Prohibition
1. A tool of domestic policy (1900-30)
2. A tool of foreign policy (1900-30)
3. The reasons for prohibition (1930-40)
4. The State in favour of cannabis (1942-5)
5. The witch-hunt (1946-60)
6. The challenge to Prohibition (1960-80)
7. The period of tolerance (1970-80)
8. Legislating for tolerance (1970-80)
9. Back to the past: `Just say no' (1981-8)
10. Persecution frenzy: `Zero tolerance' (1989-92)

Chapter Four - Official Reports
1. Government and Scientific Commissions
2. The European Parliament

Chapter Five - The Spurious Arguments for Prohibition
1. Cannabis `is addictive'
2. Cannabis `is the first step towards heroin'
3. Cannabis `causes brain damage'
4. Cannabis `leads to chromosome damage'
5. Cannabis `weakens the body's defences'
6. Cannabis `reduces testosterone'
7. Cannabis `leads to hashish psychosis'
8. Cannabis `causes aggression'
9. Cannabis `causes dangerous driving'

Chapter Six - Medical Uses of Cannabis
1. Glaucoma (intraocular hypertension)
2. Side-effects of chemotherapy (nausea and vomiting)
3. Asthma
4. Epilepsy and spasms
5. Depression and anorexia
6. Pain of varying aetiology
7. Antitumour effects
8. Detoxification of alcoholics and drug addicts
9. Pharmaceutical products based on cannabis

Chapter Seven - Conclusion


1 . Identity of Cannabis
2. Medical Uses of Cannabis
3. Reports of Official Commissions
4. Effects of Cannabis on Driving Ability
5. Comparison of Danger Levels of Various Substances
6. Extent of Use in the USA, 1990 (Marihuana and Hashish)

1. US Department of Agriculture: Yearbook of 1913
2. US Department of Agriculture: Bulletin No. 404, 1916
3. US Internal Revenue Dept.: Marihuana Tax Act (1937)
4. US Department of Agriculture: Film `Hemp for Victory'
5. US Department of Agriculture: Bulletin No. 1935

Cannabis Sativa (E.W.Smith)


To my wife Alexandra, without whom this book couldn't have been written.

About the Author

Kleanthis Grivas (b. 1944) is a psychiatrist and neurologist. He has studied medicine and sociology and received his MD and his PhD in Psychiatry from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, and is a regular contributor to a number of periodicals and to the newspapers Thessaloniki (Thessaloniki) and Eleftherotypia (Athens). He was the editor of the `Critique of the Government's Draft Law on Drugs' (1986) by the Special Committee of the Medical Association of Thessaloniki. His publications (in Greek) include:

Greece 1940-1974 (Athens: Dialogos, 1974)
Greece in the 20th Century (Thessaloniki: 1981)
Scapegoat: Mental `Illness' and Drug Addiction (Athens: Paideia, 1983)
Public Health: Beating up on Socialisation (Athens: Stohastis, 1984)
Psychiatric Totalitarianism: The Historical and Social Parameters of Psychiatry (doctoral thesis, Thessaloniki: lanos, 1985)
The Authority of Violence: The Dead-end of Development, Terrorism, Violence, Drugs, Suicide, Rape, Psychiatric Totalitarianism (Thessaloniki: Ianos, 1987)
Oppositional Psychiatry: Before the Authoritarian Remedial State (Thessaloniki: Ianos, 1989)
Papandreism: A Dark Green Authoritarianism (Thessaloniki: Ekdotiki, 1989)
Drugs and Power (Thessaloniki: Ekdotiki, 1990)
Drugs: The Price of Suppression (Thessaloniki: Ekdotiki, 1991)
Cannabis: Marihuana, Hashish - (Athens: Nea Synora-A.A.Livanis, 1994)
Opiates: Morphine, Heroin, Methadone (Athens: Nea Synora-A.A.Livanis, 1995)
Drug Prohibition: A Tool of Domestic and Foreign Policy (in press)

I'm not in favour of mind-affecting substances; but I support their legalisation.
Firstly, for moral reasons: no one but me has the right to decide which substances I shall or shall not consume.
Secondly, for political reasons: society is not threatened by mind-affecting substances. The danger lies only in the authorities' repressive policy against them.
The right to vote and the right to control my own body are essential aspects of my freedom.
The right to vote is a fundamental aspect of my freedom as a citizen. And the right to control my body is a central aspect of my freedom as an individual.
To ban me from voting is to remove my right to exercise some measure of control over those in power, and consequently it suppresses my freedom as a citizen.
To ban mind-affecting substances is to remove my right to control my own body, and consequently it suppresses my freedom as an individual.
Paraphrasing Thomas Szasz