Drawing on his recent book Psychonauts: Drugs and the Making of the Modern Mind (Yale University Press, 2023), Mike Jay will narrate the history of self-experiment with mind-altering drugs in the pharmacology and the mind sciences.
By the late nineteenth century the practice was widespread among those studying altered mental states and the subsconscious, including Sigmund Freud and William James. It was subsequently marginalised by the decline of introspective psychology and the stigmatisation of drug use, but re-emerged in the postwar era with the discovery of psychedelics.
UCL Health Humanities Centre draws together staff from different disciplines, departments and faculties engaged in teaching and research on matters relating to health, illness and well-being. The centre is based at UCL Institute of Advanced Studies.