DRCLAS Tuesday Seminar Series: Marijuana and the Origins of the U.S. Colombia Drug Connection


Tuesday, April 18, 2017, 12:00pm to 2:00pm


CGIS South, S-250, 1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA


Speaker: Lina Britto, Ph.D., New York University, historian of modern Latin America and the Caribbean

Moderator: Steven Levitsky, Professor of Government, Department of Government, Harvard University


Before Colombian cocaine made headlines, marijuana coming from the South American nation flooded U.S. cities and suburbs at a time when smoking weed was the most common illegal indulgence. By examining the first drug boom in the country that would later become one of the largest drug havens in the world, this talk addresses an intriguing puzzle: how the trajectory of development in certain Latin American countries and regions allowed illegal drug economies to emerge and collapse during the last quarter of the twentieth century?

Lina Britto is a Colombian journalist and historian. She works as assistant professor of History at Northwestern University, and faculty fellow at the Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies, Harvard University. Her work has been published in the Hispanic American Historical Review, Revista Contemporánea, NACLA, and El Espectador. She's finishing a book manuscript on Colombia's marijuana boom.