A psychedelic cure; an exploration and analysis on the state’s relationship with scientific research
Neo-liberal western democracies strongly encourage scientific research and promote freedom of scientific practice. When taking a closer look at the legislation around research in psychedelic substances, however, it becomes apparent that there are number of obstacles restricting this scientific freedom. This paper explores these obstacles in light of the paradoxical relationship between the state and science. It is particularly timely because of the increasing interest in research on psychedelics in the West and rising awareness of their therapeutic potential. The paper aims to raise awareness about difficulties and obstacles present while doing research in psychedelics, and seeks to contribute to our understanding of how the state and scientific research are inextricably linked through historical, cultural and economic dependencies.
Aleksandra Gracjasz is a student at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. She started her current research master’s degree in Anthropology at the Department of Behavioural and Social Sciences in September 2015. Previously, she had pursued a bachelor degree in Sociology at the University of York, England, which she obtained in June 2014. Her present master’s thesis topic deals with altered states of consciousness (ASC) achieved through dance rituals. This topic was inspired by the essay she will present at the conference, which explores the relationship between the state and the research in psychedelic substances.