Not Stark Raving Mad about Raves


Spiked's Emily Hill hangs out with British ravers and muses on the public discourse about drugs:

Drug-taking is never interesting to those not taking drugs unless they can whip up a paranoia about it, because otherwise it's just a load of people dancing in a field not doing anyone else any harm, and not really doing themselves much harm either. What's interesting is not the objective high, but the subjective possibilities of the 'dark side' that commentators think they can trace in the high. They try to invest meaning in a phenomenon that means absolutely nothing. It's called 'raving' for a reason. It's not 'dancing' or 'listening' or 'doing something constructive with your freetime', its 'raving': meaningless drug-taking in a variety of uncomfortable scenarios.

It's not actually the drugs themselves that rivet the Daily Mail and the Guardian in equal measure, but rather the social connotations of Fear and Loathing that they think they can trace in the derelict warehouses and secluded beaches where raves take place across the land.

More here.