Hansen, “Pharmaceutical Evangelicalism and Spiritual Capitalism”

Hansen, Helena. 2013. “Pharmaceutical Evangelicalism and Spiritual Capitalism: An American Tale of Two Communities of Addicted Selves.” In Addiction Trajectories, edited by Eugene Raikhel and William Garriott, 108-125. Durham: Duke University Press. 

Excerpt: “This contrast is highlighted by two clips that aired on television in the early 200os, one representing a faith-based concept of addiction treatment and the other an office-based opiate maintenance concept of treatment. The first is a public service announcement by the Partnership for a Drug Free Puerto Rico, which opens with a weathered Latino man in a tattered T-shirt who asks drivers at an intersection for change. He enters a dark stairway, takes coins out of his pocket, puts them on a table, and rolls up his sleeves, apparently to inject drugs. The camera pans out to reveal that he is actually in a church, placing coins in a donation basket and freeing his arms for prayer in front of a great cross . . . The second television clip is from the HBO special series Addiction. It profiles a young white couple in Maine who are starting buprenorphine maintenance as a treatment for their OxyContin dependence . . . In this chapter, I trace the origins of these apparently divergent narratives, then follow their logics to an unexpected convergence. The individualist focus of the characters in both clips on their personal, inner states – formerly addicted evangelist and biomedically maintained – belies the degree to which substances, spiritual or molecular, are the medium for new, imagined global collectivities in which ex-addicts are pharmaceutically maintained addicts place themselves. To generate these collectivities, pharmaceutical manufacturers and prescribers engage in medical evangelism – testimonials and ritual consecration of molecular technology as the source of salvation – while evangelist addiction ministries market moral authority through membership in a virtual spiritual network to socially displaced postindustrial consumers.”

Guerrero, “The Street is Free”

Guerrero, Bernardo. 2012. The Street is Free: Identity and Politics among Evangelicals in Chile. Religion, State, and Society 40(1):11-23.

Abstract: Chilean Evangelicals, like their peers elsewhere in Latin America, have striven for over a century to be recognised by state and society. They have achieved a number of advances, but feel that this is not yet enough. This article examines the practice most used by Evangelicals to affirm their identity: street preaching. In the drama of street preaching they mobilise and express their identity, including their political identity. Their preaching involves traditional themes of Pentecostal discourse: the saved versus the lost, and the offer of a better life that can be obtained by joining the ranks of this religious movement.