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Language and Addiction: Exploring the Role of Discourse in Drug Addiction

Sham Haidar1, Naghman Arif2 & Yawer Abbas3

Abstract
Drug addiction is a social evil which has been studied by different scholars of the world from different perspectives. Most of the research conducted to understand this phenomenon is from the perspective of psychology, neurophysiology, medical sciences, and behavioral sciences. However, the discourse of drug addicts that probably contributes to addiction or can be used to
avoid drug addiction is least explored. This study explores drug addiction from the perspective of the discourse of drug addicts. Using social constructivism and Sapir-Whorf Hypothesizes theoretical framework, the study involves Hashish addicts, Alcohol addicts, and Heroin addicts from different cities of Pakistan as research participants. The data are collected in the form of informal interviews, focus group, and observations to understand drug addicts‟ discourse about the use of drugs. The study found out that the different types of drug addicts use different kinds of discourse. The use of language plays role in drug addiction practices. The
study also suggests the treatment of drug addiction through a new kind of therapy
that may be termed as Discourse Therapy.

Keywords: Drug addicts, language as a shield, discourse and addiction, religious
terms, bravery and drugs