12,000

We have over 12,000 students, from over 100 countries, within one of the safest campuses in the UK

93%

93% of Lancaster students go into work or further study within six months of graduating

Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > It's the most fun you can have for twenty quid:...
View graph of relations

« Back

It's the most fun you can have for twenty quid: Meanings, Motivations and Consequences of British Ketamine Use.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date06/2008
JournalAddiction Research and Theory
Journal number3
Volume16
Number of pages14
Pages231-244
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Whilst ketamine use in clubbing contexts has recently been the focus of British media attention, little quantitative or qualitative data is available on its use amongst those young people participating in Britain’s contemporary post-rave electronic dance music (EDM) ‘scenes’ as clubbers. Drawing on data from in-depth semi-structured interviews conducted with 12 current regular ketamine users, this article explores user accounts of their motivations for taking ketamine within EDM clubbing contexts, the consequences (both positive and negative) of use and the broader meanings of use. Each issue is considered in relation to two key emergent themes: ‘intensity’ and ‘sociability’ in the drug experience. Participants attempted to optimise the possibility of pleasurable intoxication. This primarily involved participants controlling the quantity, quality and frequency of dose, along with various aspects of the setting of their use, in the hope of producing their individual favoured level of intensity and level of sociability during the ketamine experience. Relatedly, participants drew on discourses of uncontrolled hedonism, compulsion, ‘inappropriate to occasion’ and ‘inappropriate for purpose’ usage to make sense of negative consequences and to firmly position themselves as ‘sensible’ ‘recreational’ users in light of conflicting, largely negative meanings of ketamine produced by other (non-ketamine using)clubbers, the media and ‘official’ responses to use. The article concludes by considering how pleasure is understood and acquired by participants through a pleasure nexus of intersecting axes of intensity and sociability, with users attempting to manage their own intoxication in accordance with individual preferences and previous experiences.

Bibliographic note

Part of a co-edited SI on ketamine use

Related projects