Re: Spoiled Reward-Pathway Hypothesis

From: Wade T.Smith (
Date: Tue Aug 21 2001 - 13:41:28 BST

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    Subject: Re: Spoiled Reward-Pathway Hypothesis
    Date: Tue, 21 Aug 2001 08:41:28 -0400
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    On 08/21/01 08:04, Philip Jonkers said this-

    >I was
    >wondering whether or not it is precisely our culture which
    >has fed emergence of addictive behavior by evolving our
    >brain correspondingly.

    There is also the social allowance of the addict within human culture, a
    co-dependency, if you will, and the profit motive on the part of pushers
    and dealers. Whether or not there is sufficient motive from the brain
    could be somewhat answered by making an intoxicant freely available to a
    chimpanzee tribe, for instance. (I suspect it is only in the chimps best
    interest that none of their number has figured out how to ferment
    alcohol....) In early hunter-gatherer societies the drug addict was the
    shaman, also totally culturally allowed, and many rituals involved
    intoxications, and were scheduled.

    We've often attributed magical qualities to some forms of intoxication,
    and the level of tolerance for some addictions is, to those of a
    pragmatic nature, somewhat shocking. (The word 'coddled' rises to the

    - Wade

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