Victoria’s Andrew Struthers’ new book an anthropological study on cannabis

Book reading on April 7 at 4:20 p.m 543 Herald Street

You’re invited to take a trip with Canada’s answer to Hunter S. Thompson or Thomas De Quincey—depends who you ask.

Victoria writer, critic, and filmmaker, Andrew Struthers, has a new book, The Sacred Herb/The Devil’s Weed, a double paperback that attempts to peel back the layers of the cannabis experience.

The proposal for the book came out of necessity. “I was totally flat broke, and I was going to Vancouver anyway and was seeing Rolf [at New Star, his publisher] to wangle a grand out of him or I’m going to be evicted,” says Struthers.

Told through the hazy stories of stoners, is Struthers’ anthropological examination of weed culture, and how one of the fasting growing industries in Canada shapes Western culture. That’s just one layer.

“This book, in essence, is about the difference between lateralized thinking and hierarchal thinking,” Struthers says. “One of the things that marijuana does is that it reduces hierarchal thinking and increases lateralized thinking.”

“Even though there’s a fair bit of science in this book, you have to really go about it carefully. The problem with it is, as soon as I say ‘neurotransmitter’, your eyes glaze over,” he explains. “Especially if you’re a pothead, obviously.”

Admitting that some of his concepts are “even too complicated for this book”, Struthers relies heavily on anecdotes and visualization.

The first part, The Devil’s Weed, reads like one continuous sentence, and was completed in a month – sometimes, Struthers wrote it stoned. His publisher loved it.

The second part, The Sacred Herb, took three months, during which Struthers abstained from cannabis. His publisher demanded a re-write.

Within the experience of writing the book, Struthers says he was testing his theories on thinking, and cannabis.

On April 7, Struthers will be at 543 Herald Street reading from The Sacred Herb/The Devil’s Weed at 4:20 p.m.

Just Posted

Out of the flames comes inspiration for Quinn Bachand

Victoria guitarist and Brishen to unveil new CD in Friday show at Christian Science Church

Irreverent comedy a habit in VOS’ newest show, Nunsense

Musical theatre production by Victoria Operatic Society features three shows in July

Esquimalt artist captures culinary personalities with body art

Mary Ploegsma’s unique chef/tattoo portrait series on display this month in Chinatown café

Jazz bargains available for music lovers this month

Left Coast Jazz Fest offers four-show package deal, extends discount for TD JazzFest ticket holders

WINE NOTES: Wild about the whites

Plenty of reason to try out these affordable whites, writes Monday wine columnist Robert Moyes

COLUMN: Revisiting a decade ago as Victoria celebrates 20 years of Ska

4 million tourists visit Greater Victoria each year and there’s a reason we remain despite them

Rick Mercer-led comedy team in for second Just for Laughs show at UVic

Comedy company will stage two shows Nov. 16 at Farquhar Auditorium

Trade expo a key part of 2019 BC Seafood Festival

Comox Valley hosts celebration of seafood industry; numerous events on tap this weekend

Samoa bans Elton John biopic, Rocketman

Depictions of homosexuality, contrary to law, cause country’s censor to prevent film’s screening

REVIEW: If you like farce, you’ll love Noises Off at Langham Court!

By Sheila Martindale The nine cast members in Langham Court Theatre’s new… Continue reading

Celtic songs tuned up for Sooke coffeehouse

Celtic Reflections to perfrom on June 15

Most Read