Concluding Themes

  • Christopher Hallam


This chapter represents the conclusion of the book. It brings together and updates the themes explored in previous chapters, and revises the picture of the white drug subculture and its relationships to the British System, which had been based chiefly on sociological work. The heroin subculture of the 1960s is seen as a development of earlier groups, trends and attitudes taking place across the lifespan of the classic British System. It inhabited the same iconic spaces as its 1930s predecessor, and had recourse to a tradition of script doctors that had been evolving in parallel with British opiate consumption since before the Rolleston Report. This second wave expanded and proliferated in ways that the first wave was unable to, owing to a less restrictive social and cultural context. There was a spread of broadly bohemian attitudes and practices through the host society, while the British System of prescribing was largely, if gradually, consigned to the past by the changes stemming from the second Brain Committee.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher Hallam
    • 1
  1. 1.Global Drug Policy ObservatorySwansea UniversitySwanseaUK

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