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The Plants of the Gods: Hallucinogens, Healing, Culture and Conservation

“Plants of the Gods: Hallucinogens, Healing, Culture and Conservation” is a new and unique podcast focusing on the hallucinogenic plants and fungi whose impact on world culture and religion – and healing potential - is only now beginning to be appreciated as never before.

Apr 19, 2023

Today's episode features ethnobotanist and anthropologist, Dr. Glenn Shepard. This two-part discussion between Dr. Shepard and Dr. Plotkin covers an array of fascinating topics including the role language plays in ethnobotany, shamanism in a changing world, and personal encounters and experiences with tobacco in indigenous Amazonian communities (revisit our last two episodes to brush up on tobacco!). Join us today for part one of this captivating interview.


Episode Notes

“A Deep History of Tobacco in Lowland South America.” The Master Plant : Tobacco in Lowland South America

Descola, Philippe. The Spears of Twilight: Life and Death in the Amazon Jungle. New Press, 2009. 

Emboden, William. Narcotic Plants. Collier Books, 1980. 

Furst, Peter T. Hallucinogens and Culture. Chandler & Sharp Publishers, Inc., 1997. 

Goodman, Jordan. Tobacco in History and Culture. Thomson Gale, 2005. 

Goodman, Jordan. Tobacco in History: The Cultures of Dependence. Routledge, 1994. 

Hobhouse, Henry. Seeds of Wealth: Four Plants That Made Men Rich. Macmillan, 2012. 

Marris, Emma. “The Anthropologist and His Old Friend, Who Became a Jaguar.” Culture, National Geographic, 4 May 2021,

Narby, Jeremy, and Rafael Chanchari Pizuri. Plant Teachers: Ayahuasca, Tobacco, and the Pursuit of Knowledge. New World Library, 2021. 

Ott, Jonathan. Pharmacotheon: Entheogenic Drugs, Their Plant Sources and History. Natural Products, 1996. 

Schultes, Richard Evans, and Albert Hofmann. Plants of the Gods: Origins of Hallucinogenic Use. A. Van Der Marck Editions, 1987. 

Shepard, Glenn H. “Psychoactive Plants and Ethnopsychiatric Medicines of the Matsigenka.” Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, vol. 30, no. 4, 1998, pp. 321–332.,

Steffensen, Jennifer. “The Reality (TV) of Vanishing Lives: An Interview with Glenn Shepard.” Anthropology News, vol. 49, no. 5, 2008, pp. 30–30.,

Wilbert, Johannes. Tobacco and Shamanism in South America. Yale University Press, 1993.