Erowid References Database
“The LSD Controversy: an Overview”.
Amer J Psychiat. 1973;130:1408.
The LSD Controversy is apparently written primarily for teachers who have recently been assigned the task of 'drug education," often without specialized training. For this purpose it is an almost excellent book. Its excellence lies in its simple. succinct, and understandable marshaling of both information and opinion about LSD. Its chapters discuss terminology, the issue of addiction and dependence, transportation and cost, the psychological and physical effects and complications of LSD (including chromosomal damage and teratogenicity), and medical and unsupervised patterns of use. The last chanter is an unusually complete and well-balanced summary of what is both known and unknown about LSD and is of concern to the issue of its safety when the drug is self - administered. This book was published in November 1972. However, as the author notes, much of the material is unfortunately drawn from a paper published in 1967. This is reflected in the bibliography: with few exceptions (official documents, primarily) the papers referred to are drawn from earlier publications. As a result there are some factual errors, e.g., concerning the rate of excretion of LSD; however, for the purpose of this book they are insignificant. But more importantly, the degree of uncertainty concerning the reported chromosomal damage and teratogenicity is not adequately presented. Nowhere is it made clear that people take LSD and other drugs because they find the experience pleasurable. Drug use is different from drug abuse, and the relationship of LSD use to other drug use and the drug subculture is not discussed. However, despite these omissions The LSD Controversy does provide clear and generally accurate information about LSD, and it will be a useful reference for those who require a non-technical source of information.
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