• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The consumption and control of legal and illegal opiates has clear global dimensions. Discuss.

Extracts from this document...


The consumption and control of legal and illegal opiates has clear global dimensions. Discuss. The consumption of opiates for both its pain killing qualities and its recreational uses dates back to at least the ancient Greeks, and its cultural, trade and legal status has changed constantly during this time. This essay will look briefly the way opiates have been seen, traded and controlled around the world, discussing how the perspective of the drug differs throughout history and geographical location, at the effects caused economically, culturally and politically, at different levels of society and the effects that legislation has had both locally and globally. In the late 1700's the British were trading world wide however they were at disadvantage with China as they were importing vast quantities of tea but had no exports to China, in order to balance this, the British started exporting opium that they were producing in India to China, resulting in the British East India Company gaining the monopoly of the opium trade by 1790. Due to the number of consumers in China, the emperor, Kia King, banned the use of opium, however the British continued to supply as they considered this prohibition unfair, resulting in the Opium Wars in which China was forced to allow ports of free trade and allow the importation of opium. ...read more.


The UN estimates that some 200 million people (4.8% of the world's population aged 15-64) use illegal drugs annually with 25 million being classed as problem users (0.6%). (See p.9 of the report.). The consumption of illegal drugs is also a diverse subject; many people in developing countries who are suffering from malnutrition and extreme poverty, use opiates to elude the pains of everyday life, following cultural traditions. Many areas in Asia, especially those in the poppy producing regions, such as Afghanistan, have for centuries used opium as a cure for hunger and cold, consuming it by drinking it in tea or smoking it in pipes, however, with the production of poppies growing and laboratories converting it to heroin locally, these habits are changing, as is the availability of heroin in the countries in the area which were previously in the Soviet Union. Many of these countries have no resources and therefore the illegal drug trade is a double edged blade, providing an income and wealth on one hand, whilst on the other, leaving thousands as addicts and therefore in worse poverty. The sheer size and illicit nature of the opium economy mean that it infiltrates and seriously affects the regions economy, state, society, and politics. ...read more.


As corporations become larger and multinational, their influence and interests go further accordingly. Being able to influence and own most media companies, it is hard to be able to publicly debate the notions and ideals that corporations pursue. Some choices that corporations take to make profits can affect people all over the world. Sometimes fatally, as is the case of the opium market. We have also seen how what is now considered a crime historically was not, and therefore could stop being a crime in the future, and how acts that are considered a crime in one part of the world are not in another. The illegal consumption of opiates results in misery in all parts of the globe and has to be dealt with on a local base, whilst the trade, legal or illegal, is of clear global dimensions. Word count 1,155. Refferences: The Open University (2009a) 'Use, culture and addiction' in Opium: Cultures, Wars, Markets, Milton Keynes, The Open University [DVD]. The Open University (2009b) 'Production and distribution' in Opium: Cultures, Wars, Markets, Milton Keynes, The Open University [DVD]. The Open University (2009b) 'Control and Regulation' in Opium: Cultures, Wars, Markets, Milton Keynes, The Open University [DVD]. World Drug Report 2007, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime ?? ?? ?? ?? PI: B6185638 - 2 - Marcus Lane. PI: B6185638 TMA 1. DD301 - 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Criminology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Criminology essays

  1. Anthropology and its Uses in Single Body and Mass Fatality Cases

    in order to provide positive identification. The reason for choosing anthropology as the study area for this piece is that it is a relatively unheard of field, and because it is also quite a contested field - with many legal representatives not believing it should be given any real legal standing or credence.

  2. Gun Control. In this paper, the author will discuss the magnitude of gun control ...

    In an attempt to regulate gun control the Commerce Clause of the Constitution empowers states and the federal government to: (1) deny certain individuals, (convicted felons and the mentally incompetent) the right to own firearms; (2) require licenses and make owners pass a firearms safety examination; (3)

  1. How are legal and illegal opium markets affected by global relations?

    this link was used in the early 1970s by the government of America to bring about a campaign against groups that posed a threat to the administration. In 1971 President Richard Nixon declared a nationwide ?war on drugs? within the USA.

  2. Critically analyse the arguments for and against the controlled prescription of pharmaceutical heroin.

    Various treatments are available, depending on the individual, but methadone (an opiate that blocks the effects of heroin and prevents withdrawals) has proven to be a success with the majority of heroin addicts. There are other pharmaceutical alternatives to methadone, such as buprenorphine, behavioral therapy, and rehabilitation centres, which are

  1. Marijuana Legalization. The first and most basic reason that marijuana should be legal ...

    138) Clearly these people have learned to make us of altered states of consciousness. Often our greatest songs, poems, novels, and works of art were conceived under the influence of marijuana. Additionally marijuana can "enhance the appreciation of food, music, sexual activity, natural beauty, and other sensual experiences...

  2. Decriminalising Marijuana: Social and Legal Implications

    involved in motor vehicle accidents, immunological effects, possible reproductive impairment, cardiovascular system over-stimulation, has a correlation with various forms of cancer and respiratory system impairment (due to smoking), and other possible health issues.[17] However, the fact is, the adverse health consequences of cannabis use are not significantly more serious than

  1. Perceptions of wrongful convictions amongst Americans working in the criminal justice system.

    core element that separates civilized from uncivilized countries: The center of ideals of every Western government is in its judicial system. Here are the symbols of all of those great principles which give dignity to the individual, which gives independence to the businessman, and which not only make the State

  2. The consumption and control of legal and illegal opiates has clear global dimensions. Discuss

    Tajikistan officials explain how their country has been affected due to the closely situated country of Afghanistan and how difficult the illicit drug market is to deal with (The Open University, 2009 (a)). At the first level of this ongoing chain are the people living in these regions who claim

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work