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Opium: Uncovering the Politics of the Poppy
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Opium: Uncovering the Politics of the Poppy

3.15  ·  Rating details ·  13 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Known to the Greeks as opos or opion, as afiun in Persian and Arabic, and fuyung in Chinese, opium is at once a palliative and a poison. Its exotic origins, its literary associations, and the properties that are, often erroneously, attributed to it have ensured an ongoing air of mystery. Pierre-Arnaud Chouvy reveals the long and fascinating history of a powerful and addict ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published March 15th 2010 by Harvard University Press (first published September 16th 2002)
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Emma G
Jul 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
At times the translation and the academic writing slowed me down but overall it's well written and clear and eye opening. Lots of good useful information about Burma, China, Thailand and Afghanistan. Really everyone should know these things.
Kamal Anwar
Feb 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
I picked up this book at a shop in Islamabad and read it as part of my research on opium’s influence on Afghanistan’s current political and socio-economic state for an article I wrote (couple years after my army service there).

It’s a comprehensive account of not only the opium production in a historic context for the Golden Crescent (Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan), but also for the Golden Triangle (Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam).

The author explains in detail the complexity of getting the prod
...more
Margaret Sankey
Jun 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
Chouvy explores the long history of opium, and its role as both a symptom and a tool of the dysfunctional governments of Burma, Afghanistan and China, and the problem that while opium production is deeply entwined with issues of poverty, anarchic tribal government in remote places, economic survival and leverage with the government (such as it is in many places), international organizations meant to suppress or regulate it see through a lens of crime.
David Ward
Jan 24, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: non-fiction, drugs
Opium: Uncovering the Politics of the Poppy by Pierre-Arnaud Chouvy (Harvard University Press 2009) (363.45) managed to make an awfully dry story out of a fascinating topic. My rating: 2/10, finished 1/23/11.
KEITH
May 03, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: politics
Very solid scholarship, but the book was more about the socio-economics rather than the politics of opium, which is what I was interested in. I enjoyed the "ecology of opium production" section.
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