Download Cannabis: A History by Martin Booth PDF

By Martin Booth

To a few it's the vintage "gateway drug," to others it's a innocuous approach to chill out, or offer reduction from ache. a few worry it's risky and addictive, whereas others think it may be decriminalized. regardless of the perspective, hashish incites debate at each point, and the impression it has on each nook of the globe is undeniable.

In this complete research, Martin sales space crafts a story of scientific boost and spiritual enlightenment; of political subterfuge and legislations enforcement; of crafty smugglers, highway pushers, gang war, writers, artists, and musicians. And certainly, sales space chronicles the interesting procedure in which hashish grew to become outlawed through the Western international, and the impression such laws has had at the international economic climate.

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They are cheap. The length of a stag was dictated wholly by the length of the film reel it was being shot on, a limitation that very early on tied the genre to the ten-or-so-minute mark. The typical stag can no more be compared to a “professional” film than Grandma Moses can be compared to Michelangelo (or the Sex Pistols to Sgt. Pepper). But that, as admirers of Grandma Moses (and the Sex Pistols) will know, is what makes them so important. Unfettered by ambition, uncluttered by any boundaries beyond those that the filmmaker personally imposed, and certainly untainted by such notions as box office or commercial potential, stag films represent the first (and possibly sole) branch of the motion-picture industry that can be described as truly free; made by independent filmmakers in every sense of the phrase.

Few secret cinemas operated from the same premises more than once. Like modern raves, their locations were fiercely guarded secrets until as close to screening time as possible. In Germany, details of upcoming events were entrusted to the same barbers and coffeehouse waiters who were already directing likely customers to the local brothels. In Moscow, enthusiasts passed around the information via cleverly disguised invitation maps, inscribed in pidgin French. In Cairo, where the majority of secret cinemas catered exclusively to American tourists, events were promoted by hotel staff and tour guides.

Hollywood’s rise to cinematic preeminence was a direct consequence of New York mayor McClellan’s campaign against the picture houses in 1908. Immediately, the ten largest movie producers and distributors of the day (including Edison, Biograph, Pathé and Gaumont) banded together to form the Motion Picture Patents 41 Company, the industry’s first concerted attempt to prove that it could be trusted not to corrupt the American people. It was also a supremely self-serving cartel. The MPPC effectively controlled every aspect of the filmmaking business, from the patents applied to the necessary equipment, through the usages to which that equipment could be put, and on to the venues in which it could be utilized.

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