Psychedelic discourses: A qualitative study of discussions in a Danish online forum

Søren Holm, Margit Anne Petersen*, Oskar Enghoff, Morten Hesse

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskrift/Konferencebidrag i tidsskrift /Bidrag til avisTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


BACKGROUND: This study focuses on user-perspectives related to norms, beliefs and practices concerning psychedelic substances as they are articulated in a Danish online forum. The study combines an interest in online drug research with a focus on discourse analysis to account for the dialectical relationship between individual and shared knowledge regarding the use and meaning of psychedelics.

METHODS: A total of 1,865 posts from 154 threads of online discussion were coded and analyzed thematically, inspired by a socio-cognitive approach to the study of discourse. All topics were arranged into 54 categories which were further analyzed to map recurring patterns in the construction of meaning resulting in a limited number of dominant discourses.

RESULTS: Five dominant discourses were identified: the recreational, the therapeutic, the spiritual, the scientific and the performance discourse. We suggest that these discourses can be seen as the available frameworks which forum users draw upon and reproduce when they describe, discuss, and negotiate their understandings and uses of psychedelics.

CONCLUSION: This study demonstrates the importance of having a nuanced approach to user perceptions. Future drug policy and practice development should take these nuances into account and expect significant variation in the motives and modalities of the use of psychedelics.

TidsskriftInternational Journal of Drug Policy
Antal sider9
StatusUdgivet - feb. 2023


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