Worth the Shot: Establishing a Framework to Study the Influence of Drugs on Literature.

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Drugs have been influencing literature since the first literary texts were created. While being a reoccurring theme in many novels, various authors also stated that the use of drugs affected their writing. Several works which are now considered classics or as novels which defined a certain time in the United States and American literature are claimed to have been heavily influenced by the use of drugs by its authors. Nonetheless, a theoretical framework or in-depth research which analyzed these effects was nonexistent. Therefore, this thesis set out to establish a framework which would study the influence of drugs on a literary work. In order to analyze the framework’s validity, two novels are examined with the five parameters of which the framework consists. The novels of choice are William S. Burroughs’ Naked Lunch and Hunter S. Thompson Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, novels written in respectively the era of the Beat Generation and Counter Culture. The framework prov! ed to be effective in creating a better understanding of how drugs influenced the novel and the writing process of the author. Further research into this subject and combining this approach with other fields of study will eventually result in a theoretical framework that can be used to examine a novel and provide an in-depth analysis of the influence of drugs on a particular work.
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