Mr Theo Di Castri (2019)
Growing up in Canada during the 90's, I received a prohibitionist "just-say-no" drug education. It wasn't until I began exploring the history and politics of drug policy during my post-secondary studies that I started to understand how drastic and unevenly distributed the social costs of prohibitionist drug policies actually are. Living in New York and Mexico City over the past decade has further exposed me to the transnational complexity of the War on Drugs. These experiences prompted me to co-found a cross-border initiative that brings together youth and educators from the frontlines of the War on Drugs to rethink drug education and foster transnational solidarity within the fight for more socially just drug policies (catalyst-catalizador.org). My PhD project builds on this work by tracing the genealogy of "prevention science," a methodology that grows out of 20th century attempts to curb drug addiction and that is increasingly being applied to a wider range of social problems. I am specifically interested in understanding how prevention science took shape in and between the US, Mexico and Colombia in the contexts of the Cold War, the War on Drugs, and the countercultural movements of the era. By situating prevention science within its broader sociopolitical context and exploring the values that underpin its practice, my ultimate goal is to reserve a space for a more pluralistic participation in the production of knowledge and decision-making about our collective futures.