John Bryan Page


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Overview



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A great deal of Page's research has focused on long-term marijuana use, and drug use among new immigrants to the United States
John Bryan Page is a medical anthropologist specializing in drug use and abuse and other socially disapproved behaviors. He currently serves as professor and department chair at the University of Miami.


His work over the past three decades has included long-term marijuana use, poly-drug consumption, injection, crack use and the sex trade, and has emphasized drug use among new immigrants to the United States.

Page explores the health impacts of drug use focusing on high-risk behaviors and has included dimensions of prevention, intervention and risk reduction. His research pays particular attention to the relationship between intravenous drug use and the spread of HIV and AIDS among high-risk groups. Additional emphasis includes ethnographic examination of drug culture and drug interventions.

Research & Work



sf_Page_book_comprehending Drug Use.jpg Bryan Page’s most notable contributions to anthropology are from his ethnographic work on drug culture.He published the book Comprehending Drug Use with Merrill Singer in 2012, which marked the first full-length critical overview of ethnographic methods in drug research. The book was written to combat the overly clinical classification of drug abuse and the lack of ethnographic material on the topic. It explores drug ethnography’s interactions with other factors such as public health, globalization, and economic pressures; additionally, it provides a methods guide for upcoming ethnographers on user populations. Page is an advocate for examining drugs within the framework of drug culture, which requires the faceted ethnographic approach advocated for in much of his work.

He is also notable for advocating a mixed-methods approach to research, drawing on epidemiological methods and considerations in his anthropological research. Notably, Page discusses how a researcher should approach interactions of local police during their time in field. He openly discourages friendly relationships with law enforcement entities. He discusses this in two works, Reflections on 40 Years of Drug Abuse Research: Changes in the Epidemiology of Drug Abuse and International Research and Local Authorities: Interplay Between Research and Police Agendas in the Field of Drug Abuse and AIDS.

He advocates not collaborating with local authorities to avoid alienating informants, and also because these relationships often disintegrate and usually don’t extend to study participants. He advises never to depend on a police promise of immunity, avoiding all illegal activity as a researcher, and relying on informant’s experience to avoid detection by authorities. He does, however, advise laying groundwork with authorities prior to engaging in fieldwork.

Page has focused much of his recent research on intravenous drug use and the spread of HIV. He advocates for needle exchange programs, which often are dismissed by authorities as condoning the use of these drugs, and by communities who reject the presence of Injection Drug Users (IDU) in their neighborhood. Nonetheless, he cites significant harm reduction, and strongly advocates for these programs. He believes they provide a safe space, resources for help, and reduces (to some degree) the isolation that drives many IDU to use in the first place. He also dismisses bad epidemiological reports on the topic found within current research in the area as lacking anthropological evaluations to contextualize program impact.

Biography


  • Page earned his Bachelors degree in Anthropology with honors from the University of Florida in Gainesville.

  • He moved to North Carolina to complete his Masters degree (also in Anthropology) from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Page then returned to Gainesville to complete his PhD from the University of Florida in 1976.

  • In 1976-77 Page was awarded a post-doctoral fellowship at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Gainesville, FL.
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    Page joined the team at the University of Miami in 1993

  • In 1978, he took his first professorship as Research Assistant Professor at the Center for Social Research on Drug Abuse for the Department of Psychiatry at the Miami School of Medicine. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1985, and full Professor in 1992.

  • In 1993 Page officially joined the Department of Anthropology as a full Professor at the University of Miami. He has served as the Chair in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Miami since 1999. He also serves as Administration for all extramurally funded projects he has received. Page has received six grant awards, ranging between $105,000-$2.5 million.

Major Publications


  • Carter WE, Page JB, Doughty PL, & Coggins WJ: Marijuana in Costa Rica. In W.E. Carter (Ed.), Cannabis in Costa Rica. Philadelphia: ISHI Press, pp. 12-40, 1980.
  • True WR, Page JB, Hovey MA, & Doughty PL: Marijuana and User Lifestyles. In W.E. Carter (Ed.), Cannabis in Costa Rica. Philadelphia: ISHI Press, pp. 98-115, 1980
  • Page, J. B. & Marcelin, L. H. Formation of Gangs and Involvement in Drug Use among Marginalized Youth: Uses of the Anthropological View. Free Inquiry in Creative Sociology, Vol. 31 (2), pp. 175-182, 2005.
  • Page JB Drug use. In C.R. Ember and M. Ember, eds. Encyclopedia of Medical Anthropology pp. 374-382. New Haven: Human Relations Area File Press, 2003.
  • Inciardi, J.A., Page, J.B., McBride, D.C., Chitwood, D.D., McCoy, C.B., McCoy, H.V, and Trapido, E.J. The Risk of Exposure to HIV contaminated needles in shooting galleries. In Karen McElrath (ed). The American Drug Scene Roxbury Press, pp.277-283, 1995.
  • Page, J. Bryan, and Merrill Singer. Comprehending Drug Use. 2010. Ethnographic Research at the Social Margins. New Brunswick, NJ : Rutgers University Press, 2010

Online Resources


For institutional profiles highlighting Bryan Page please visit:



Further Reading


Page, J. Bryan, and Merrill Singer. Comprehending Drug Use
George-reading.jpg2010. Ethnographic Research at the Social Margins. New Brunswick, NJ : Rutgers University Press, 2010

References


Clayton, Richard R., Zili Sloboda, and Bryan Page.
2009. "Reflections on 40 Years of Drug Abuse Research: Changes in the Epidemiology of Drug Abuse." Journal Of Drug Issues 39, no. 1 (December 15, 2009): 41-55

Page, J. Bryan, and Merrill Singer. Comprehending Drug Use
2010. Ethnographic Research at the Social Margins. New Brunswick, NJ : Rutgers University Press, 2010

Page, J. Bryan.
1997. "Needle exchange and reduction of harm: an anthropological view." Medical Anthropology 18, no. 1: 13-33