Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 492309
Title “My body breaks. I take solution.” Inhalant use in Delhi as pleasure seeking at a cost
Author(s) Gigengack, R.A.
Source International Journal of Drug policy 25 (2014)4. - ISSN 0955-3959 - p. 810 - 818.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.drugpo.2014.06.003
Department(s) Rural Development Sociology
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2014
Keyword(s) volatile substance misuse - street children - india - intoxication - addiction - science - rights - city
Abstract Background: Inhalant use has existed in India since the 1970s and has increased significantly over the last decades, especially among street-oriented young people. The latter constitute a heterogeneous category: children from street families, children 'of' the street, rag pickers, and part-time street children. There are also inhalant-using schoolchildren and young people in slums. Methods: Fieldwork was conducted for 1 year. Team ethnography, multi-sited and comparative research, flexibility of methods and writing field notes were explicit parts of the research design. Most research was undertaken with six groups in four areas of Delhi, exemplifying six generic categories of inhalant-using street-oriented young people. Results: Inhalants in India are branded: Eraz-Ex diluter and whitener, manufactured by Kores, are used throughout Delhi; Omni glue in one specific area. There is a general lack of awareness and societal indifference towards inhalant use, with the exception of the inhalant users themselves, who possess practical knowledge. They conceive of inhalants as nasha, encapsulating the materiality of the substances and the experiential aspects of intoxication and addiction. Fragments of group interviews narrate the sensory appeal of inhalants, and an ethnographic vignette the dynamics of a sniffing session. These inhalant-using street children seek intoxication in a pursuit of pleasure, despite the harm that befalls them as a result. Some find nasha beautiful, notwithstanding the stigmatization, violence and bodily deterioration; others experience it as an overpowering force. Conclusion: A source of attraction and pleasure, inhalants ravage street children's lives. In this mysterious space of lived experience, their self-organization evolves. Distinguishing between hedonic and side effects, addiction helps to understand inhalant use as at once neurobiological, cultural, and involving agency. The implications are that India needs to develop a policy of treatment and employment to deal with the addiction. (C) 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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