88 episodes

Drugs, drugs, drugs. Almost everyone uses them. Almost everyone has an opinion about them. Drug policy pioneer Ethan Nadelmann gets to the bottom of our strange relationship to drugs by talking with those who love them, hate them, and study them.
We’d love to hear your stories and ideas. Send us a note at psychoactive@protozoa.com or leave a voicemail at 1-833-PSYCHO-0 (1-833-779-2460).

PSYCHOACTIVE iHeartPodcasts and Protozoa

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.7 • 163 Ratings

Drugs, drugs, drugs. Almost everyone uses them. Almost everyone has an opinion about them. Drug policy pioneer Ethan Nadelmann gets to the bottom of our strange relationship to drugs by talking with those who love them, hate them, and study them.
We’d love to hear your stories and ideas. Send us a note at psychoactive@protozoa.com or leave a voicemail at 1-833-PSYCHO-0 (1-833-779-2460).

    Steve Rolles on Legalizing Drugs

    Steve Rolles on Legalizing Drugs

    The notion of legalizing any sort of illicit drug seemed preposterous to most people just twenty years ago. Now cannabis is being legalized in a growing number of states and countries, psychedelic legalization is proceeding much faster than anyone expected, and in Colombia the president and other leading political figures are talking openly of legalizing cocaine. There are, of course, many ways to legally regulate previously illegal psychoactive drugs. Perhaps no one is more expert on these issues than Steve Rolles at the UK-based Transform Drug Policy Foundation. We talked and debated about various models of legally regulating cannabis, psychedelics and stimulants; the evolving role of the US government and UN agencies; and current developments in Europe, the Americas and Asia.
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    • 1 hr 32 min
    Charley & Shelley Wininger On Healthy Aging & Sex with MDMA

    Charley & Shelley Wininger On Healthy Aging & Sex with MDMA

    It ain’t easy getting old but the right drugs, used in the right ways, can help. Charley Wininger is a psychotherapist, called “The Love Doctor,” who recently authored of Listening to Ecstasy: The Transformative Power of MDMA. I talked with him and his wife, Shelley, about the ways in which MDMA has proven invaluable in their love relationship, in building deep communities and enhancing sexuality, and in dealing with grief. MDMA, Charley says, “is not an antidote but a salve, a tonic, a rejuvenating vacation that can replenish the fountain of one’s youth.”
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    • 1 hr 3 min
    Paul Gootenberg on the Global History of Drugs

    Paul Gootenberg on the Global History of Drugs

    There’s more or less never been a drug free society in human history but scholarly examination of the history of psychoactive drugs was surprisingly sparce until just a few decades ago. Paul Gootenberg is a distinguished professor of history, author of books on the history of cocaine, editor of the recently published Oxford Handbook of Global Drug History, and president of the rapidly growing Alcohol and Drugs History Society. We talked about the evolution of this interdisciplinary field of study from its mostly anthropological origins, its connections to commodity, consumption and cultural studies as well as medicine, sociology and politics, and the pioneering works shaping the field.
    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 1 hr 1 min
    Dennis McKenna on The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss

    Dennis McKenna on The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss

    The renowned ethnopharmacologist and research pharmacognosist, Dennis McKenna, wrote "The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss: My Life with Terence McKenna," ten years ago. That book is being republished, with a new afterword by Dennis, this month, so it seemed the right moment to talk about their relationship and respective evolutions, the experiences, people, literature and ideas that shaped them, and why Dennis regards the book that he and Terence co-authored in the mid-1970s, Magic Mushroom Grower’s Guide, as perhaps their most significant accomplishment.
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    • 1 hr 1 min
    Neil Carrier on Khat

    Neil Carrier on Khat

    I’ve long been fascinated by khat, the psychoactive plant that is legal and consumed widely in Yemen and the Horn of Africa (Somalia, Ethiopia and Djibouti) but that was criminalized in recent decades in the United States, Europe and other parts of the world as Somali and other émigré communities grew. Its history and uses are somewhat analogous to coca in Latin America. Neil Carrier, a social anthropologist teaching at the University of Bristol, is one of the world’s leading experts on khat – its history, economics, markets, social roles, consumption and conflicts over its benefits, harms and “quasi-legality.”
    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Bonus episode: Psychedelic Confessions - Speaking Personally

    Bonus episode: Psychedelic Confessions - Speaking Personally

    I’m often a guest on other podcasts. Among the conversations I most enjoyed, and which many listeners may find particularly interesting, was with Giancarlo Canavesio on his Mangu.TV Podcast. He asked me to be his first guest in a series entitled “Psychedelic Confessions,” during which we reflected on our respective experiences with psilocybin mushrooms, LSD, ayahuasca, mescaline, ketamine, DMT, MDMA, cannabis, and other psychoactive substances. This was, perhaps not surprisingly, one of my most personal interviews.
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    • 1 hr 9 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
163 Ratings

163 Ratings

Non-Violant Queen ,

Love this show!!!

I am obsessed with pharmacology and ethnobotany and this show is amazing!!

MisterMonte ,

High Praise

Psychoactive is a serious and well balanced exploration of the things we consume to change ourselves for the better and sometimes worse. But you’ll be better off having listened to this podcast It brings the best thinkers, activists, officials and unofficials to give a multifaceted perspective to help us understand this thing called DRUGS.

xoxoxoxoxofan ,

Interesting topics!!!

This is a great and fascinating podcast! My question is: how does this guy sound exactly like the Science Friday guy??? I cannot believe it is not the same person!

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