History and Societal Effects of Opium
8 pages in length. Opium was the drug of choice during eighteenth- and nineteenth-century America. Popularized for its mood-altering capability, opium was first consumed in crude form and then later transformed into various recreational and medicinal strains. From the juice of the opium plant's poppy came laudanum and paragoric, two alcoholic extracts; black drop or Quaker's opium; and a
preparation for smoking, of which the Chinese immigrants were particularly fond. However, crude opium was the most popularized form centuries ago, inasmuch as approximately ten percent of its composition is that of alkaloid morphine, its most powerful mood-altering ingredient. The writer
discusses the history of opium usage, as well as
contemporary efforts to curb opiate popularity.
Bibliography lists 5 sources.