This course introduces students to the history of drugs in South Asia and beyond and covers the period from the eighteenth to the twenty-first century. We define drugs as psychoactive substances – a broad definition that includes so called narcotics such as cocaine, opium or cannabis as well as alcohol, tobacco or caffeine. The history of the production and consumption of these substances is worthy of being studied in its own right. However, drug histories also serve as windows into the wider social and economic history of a region. While the regional focus of this course lies on South Asia it aims to embed the drug histories of that region in a global context.