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The Social Construction of Technology: The Case of LSD
In this study, I use SCOT (Social Construction of Technology) theories to trace the history of lysergic acid
diethylamide-25, which is commonly known as LSD. I show how the technological system of LSD
corresponds to phases designated by SCOT theorist Thomas Hughes, specifically invention, development,
innovation, growth, competition, and consolidation.
I explain the importance of Timothy Leary and the CIA in the social construction of the LSD system, and
their influences on the transformation of LSD from a chemical technology to a highly controversial drug.
Finally, I discuss the fate of LSD research today, its usage among members of the public, especially
youngsters, and the usefulness of SCOT theories for this study.