Thoughts on cannabis in fiction

Nov 01, 17 Thoughts on cannabis in fiction

I know I have done a similar thing like this in the past, with the conclusion being that there are many faithful representations out there, however, there are few that break the mainstream. Now, this could be those which actually portray and showcase the consumption of cannabis or those which merely allude to it or even those which simply express some sort of insight into the mind of someone who smokes cannabis. For the latter point I would bring up something like Howl by Allen Ginsberg which, due to it’s nature as a poem, would be somewhat cheapened if it were to explicitly discuss cannabis use, essentially it would be a bit on the nose. Jack Kerouac’s On the Road is perhaps the novelized alter ego to Ginsberg’s poem and therefore mentions the topics and themes but elaborates further, this includes cannabis.

Starting with literature seems obvious, as it is pretty much the beginning for most current forms of entertainment in the present, every game, television show or film begins with a script and many of said genres are adaptations of literary works. I have talked previously about how the comedy series Peep Show presented the extremity and bizarre happenings in regular life as just that, regular. In the wondrously bleak comedy series, cannabis is presented candidly as something which just happens and is pretty inconsequential.

Then there are more niche forms of literature which present varying views of cannabis. One is the comic book series, Megg, Mogg and Owl by Simon Hanselmann which is a drug-fueled parody (of sorts) of the classic British children’s book Meg and Mog. In it the three titular characters live together in what could pretty much be described as squalor, if not always physical then sometimes mental degree. They use numerous intoxicants to help them through this and cannabis is presented as both a help and a hindrance to a varying degree. To me, this is very truthful, as it shows that things are good if in moderation, and that anything, even cannabis, can be abused.

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