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“CRIPPING” ADDICTION AND LIBERATING PEOPLE WHO USE DRUGS: A BIOETHICS OF DISEASE, DIAGNOSIS, DISABILITY, AND DIVINITY IN SUBSTANCE USE AND HARM REDUCTION

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

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abstract
In 2017, drug overdoses surpassed both car accidents and gun deaths as a cause of mortality in the United States (Scholl et al 2019). The overdose crisis has put the question of how to understand and treat addiction at the forefront of public discourse. The brain disease model of addiction (BDMA) dominates popular rhetoric, but medicalization remains entangled with criminalization and social control. Márcio Fabri Dos Anjos asserts, “The principal enemy faced by bioethics is thus not simply death but premature death and suffering as the fruits of injustice” (Dos Anjos 2012, p. 84). In my thesis, I argue that the current crisis of substance use and drug overdose emerged as the fruits of injustice, including racialized drug policies, biopolitics that enforce a prejudicial standard of health, and the moralization and condemnation of pleasurable deviance. In conversation with disability studies and social determinants of health, I interrogate current power regimes of medicalization and social control, offer alternative understandings of substance use and addiction, advocate for harm reduction as both a practical response and as a matter of justice, and articulate the beginning of a liberation theology for people who use drugs that demands a re-imagining of health writ large.
subject
addiction
disability
harm reduction
liberation theology
people who use drugs
substance use
contributor
Howell-Miller, Sarah Stockton (author)
King, Nancy M. P. (committee chair)
Jung, Kevin (committee member)
Gupta, Kristina (committee member)
date
2019-09-05T08:35:22Z (accessioned)
2019-09-05T08:35:22Z (available)
2019 (issued)
degree
Bioethics (discipline)
identifier
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/94312 (uri)
language
en (iso)
publisher
Wake Forest University
title
“CRIPPING” ADDICTION AND LIBERATING PEOPLE WHO USE DRUGS: A BIOETHICS OF DISEASE, DIAGNOSIS, DISABILITY, AND DIVINITY IN SUBSTANCE USE AND HARM REDUCTION
type
Thesis

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