Tripping on acid in the name of science, 1950s style

An utterly fascinating video flagged up on the Guardian website of a recorded experiment with LSD in 1956. An ‘ordinary woman’ is given the drug and her response is filmed. Skip to 1 min 50 secs for footage of her tripping. The researcher’s monologue at the end offers an intriguing insight into the intellectual prehistory of 60s hippy culture.

Yet this kind of research would be deemed entirely unacceptable now. Should this be the case? The tradition of psychedelic therapy is now largely lost, albeit with a modest resurgence lately in the exploration of the broader medical value of ‘illicit drugs’.


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