Making Coercion Work
This chapter examines how medicalized theories of addiction became the basis for the broad support for drug courts and for advocates' argument in support of enlightened coercion. It begins with a historical overview of medical interpretations of deviance that have come to dominate society's understanding of what causes people to break norms and how to “fix” this rulebreaking. It then considers the cultural proliferation of the concepts of health and illness and their expanding social reach in relation to the simultaneous intensification of medicalization, reconfigured as biomedicalization. It also discusses the historical and contemporary work on the medicalization of addiction and concludes by suggesting that drug courts are directly contributing to the medicalization of addiction by drawing on medicalized interpretations of drug addiction to advocate for enhanced criminal justice.
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