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Thursday, Jan 02, 2003

drug stories

"It is in this sense that Marcus Boon, in his theory-afflicted but nonetheless lively study "The Road of Excess" (Harvard; $29.95), says that Thomas De Quincey, with the 1821 publication of "Confessions of an English Opium Eater," "invented the concept of recreational drug use." More precisely, De Quincey invented the discourse of recreational drug use: the whole way of thinking about drug-taking as a hobby and an escape into what Baudelaire, writing about drugs in 1858, was to call our "artificial paradises."