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Unravelling An American Dilemma: The Demonization of Marihuana

Abstract of Masters Thesis Presented to the Faculty
of the Division of Humanities of Pepperdine University
 in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree
 Master of Arts



John Craig Lupien

April, 1995

Acknowledgments •ii

Table of Contents•iii

Introduction: Hidden Motives  •   ••   ••   •   ••   • •   ••   ••   •   ••   •1  

Chapter 1: An Old Path to a New Frontier•   •    •   •     ••   ••   •   ••   •14

Chapter 2: The Evolution of the Marihuana Issue in America•   •   ••   •• 42

Chapter 3: The Final Assault  • •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   •63 

Chapter 4: The Immediate Repercussions of the Marihuana Tax  Act of 1937    •   •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   •101

Conclusion: The Aftermath of the Prohibition of Marihuana ••   •   ••   •136

Bibliography •    •    •   •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   •151

About the Author   ••   •   •     •   ••   •   • ••   •   ••   ••   •   ••   ••   •   •160




Chair: John McClung, Ph. D.

The primary goal of this thesis is to reveal a new perspective with regard to the dilemma of the prohibition of marihuana.In particular, the subject matter delves into the specific history of the hemp industry of the 1930s.According to this author’s research, the circumstances surrounding the evolution of the marihuana issue in the United States were directly effected by certain developments in the hemp and wood pulp industries of the 1930s.  Aspects of this thesis are not entirely original and the author is indebted to the efforts of previous researchers. However, the main arguments of this thesis have been based upon original material.



First and foremost I would like to express my unbounded gratitude to my parents, Brooks H. Lupien and Celia R. Lupien, who have allowed me the opportunity to complete this project. Without their love and support I would not have been able to finish this thesis.

Special thanks to my parents’ dear friend, Raymond Gagnι, who helped me focus my thoughts and produce the paper before you.

For his patience and timely advice, I would like to thank my advisor, Dr. John McClung.

Likewise, for his patience and belief in my abilities, I would like to thank Dr. Paul Randolph.

Thank you to all the wonderful women at the DEA who helped me during my brief hiatus in Washington, DC.

For understanding and friendship thanks to everyone at the Westchester County Records and Archives Center.

And last but not least thanks to the Tortolanis and Amelios for extending their gracious hospitality to me in New York.


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