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Empires of Vice – The Rise of Opium Prohibition across Southeast Asia - Princeton Scholarship Online
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Empires of Vice: The Rise of Opium Prohibition across Southeast Asia

Diana S. Kim


During the late nineteenth century, opium was integral to European colonial rule in Southeast Asia. The taxation of opium was a major source of revenue for British and French colonizers, who also derived moral authority from imposing a tax on a peculiar vice of their non-European subjects. Yet between the 1890s and the 1940s, colonial states began to ban opium, upsetting the very foundations of overseas rule—how did this happen? This book traces the history of this dramatic reversal, revealing the colonial legacies that set the stage for the region's drug problems today. The book challenges th ... More

Keywords: colonial Southeast Asia, opium, European colonial rule, opium prohibition, opium taxation, drug addiction, colonial bureaucracy, illicit drugs

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2020 Print ISBN-13: 9780691172408
Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: September 2020 DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691172408.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Diana S. Kim, author
Georgetown University