The Pot Book: A Complete Guide to Cannabis – Its Role in Medicine, Politics, Science, and Culture Edited by Julie Holland, MD

The Pot Book:  A Complete Guide to Cannabis – Its Role in Medicine, Politics, Science, and Culture
Edited by Julie Holland, MD
Park Street Press (2010)
ISBN 9781594773686
Reviewed by Irene Watson for Reader Views (10/10)


It seems like we are continually hearing controversy on whether or not cannabis should be legalized, whether or not it is effective medication, or whether or not it’s a stoner drug.  “The Pot Book” dispels many myths, misconceptions and stereotypical ideas by providing documented research from experts in the field.

Cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes since 2800 BCE for treatment of absentmindedness, constipation, malaria, beriberi, rheumatism, and menstrual problems.  As well, other non-western cultures used it for medicinal and fiber purposes.

However, it was in 1907 when drug prohibition started in North America. According to David Malmo-Levine in his chapter titled “Recent History” he states the prohibition “began with opium prohibition in Canada, stemming from the racist riot against Asians in Vancouver…” with “efforts to criminalize cannabis on the national level, first in Canada in 1923 and then in the United States in 1937.”

Although some of the states are conceding and allowing cannabis to be used for medicinal purposes, many are not. Fines are stiff and in some cases jail term for possession.

Medicinal cannabis, where it is not prohibited, is used by patients ridden with cancer, Alzheimer’s, AIDS, MS, and many other illnesses.  Users report relief, yet government powers deny the use of a healing property.

Julie Holland’s compilation from experts offers readers a detailed account, not only the history of cannabis, the laws in various states, and the clinical uses, but information on parenting and what to tell children as well as resources.   I found “The Pot Book” extremely educational with many aha’s.  I’ve never done any research into cannabis and was only versed from what I’ve seen on TV.  I commend Holland for putting together this extremely important book.  I encourage those that want to expand their knowledge to read this book.  Like me, I’m sure you’ll find out many things you didn’t know.

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