Rorotoko: The Alchemy of Meth

Interview with Jason Pine, author of The Alchemy of Meth

Meth cooks practice late industrial alchemy—transforming base materials, like lithium batteries and camping fuel, into goldThe Alchemy of Meth, to me, is really about the second part of the title, A Decomposition. It is steeped in the materials of meth making, but it is also an alibi for talking about decomposition in the United States in its multiple forms: the breakdown of everyday consumer products—the active unmaking of industrial chemicals in meth labs and their ordinary, passive leaching and off-gassing anywhere and everywhere; the slow deformation of any ordinary home and the accelerated transmutation of people and landscapes through biochemical tweaking and ecological injury; and the disintegration of the American Dream, which has had a very long toxic half-life.


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