Amitav Ghosh – How the Opium Trade Shaped Capitalism

How To Academy | 13 February 2024 | 0h 38m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Amitav Ghosh about his book Smoke and Ashes: Opium’s Hidden Histories. Traces the links between the opium trade and the origins of the world’s biggest corporations and most powerful American families, and considers its relevance to the unfolding tragedy of America’s contemporary opioid crisis.

I enjoyed this episode, but not the piece at the end that suggests fossil fuels are addictive products foisted on us by oil companies. Isn’t it more sensible to attribute emissions to end users rather than the oil companies that supply that demand?

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The History of Opium

The Forum | 26 September 2019 | 0h 39m | Listen Later | iTunes
Made from the simple juice of the poppy, opium is arguably the oldest and most widely used drug in the world. Since prehistoric times it has been used to relieve physical pain and quieten troubled minds. It has enabled medical breakthroughs and inspired some of the greatest Romantic poets and composers. But opium, and its later derivatives morphine and heroin, has also brought addiction and untold misery and death, destroyed families, and corrupted entire countries. Its trade has provoked wars, and is still making global headlines today, from its production in Afghanistan to the opioid crisis in the United States.

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