Tag Archives: Howl

Allen Ginsberg Howl Judgement

Allen Ginsberg Howl Judgement

October 3, 1957

Allen Ginsberg Howl Judgement

Allen Ginsberg Howl Judgement

Free speech v free speech

     The struggle between the Bill of Right's First Amendment [Congress shall make no law ...abridging the freedom of speech..."] on paper and in reality is an ongoing one. That freedom becomes culturally uncomfortable when the speech expressed is contrary to the norm.

Allen Ginsberg Howl Judgement

James Joyce Ulysses

     On December 6, 1933 in United States v. One Book Called Ulysses.  Judge John M. Woolsey ruled that James Joyce’s Ulysses was not pornographic—that nowhere in it was the "leer of the sensualist," 

     Woolsey stated that the novel was serious and that its author was sincere and honest in showing how the minds of his characters operate and what they were thinking. Some of their thoughts, the judge said, were expressed in "old Saxon words" familiar to readers, and [i]n respect of the recurrent emergence of the theme of sex in the minds of [Joyce's] characters, it must always be remembered that his locale was Celtic and his season Spring. “To have failed to honestly tell fully what his characters thought would have been "artistically inexcusable", said the judge. 

     One might think that such a clear ruling regarding literature closed the door to future challenges, but those challenges continued and continue.

Lawrence Ferlinghetti

     Ginsberg first performed "Howl" at the Six Gallery in San Francisco on October 7, 1955.  In 1956, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, who ran City Lights Bookstore and the City Lights Press, published  "Howl" as part of collection called Howl and Other Poems

     US Custom agents seized 520 copies of the book [printed in Great Britain] on March 25, 1957 and on June 3, 1957 two San Francisco undercover cops assigned to the Juvenile Bureau arrested Shigeyoshi Murao, a clerk at the City Lights store for selling "Howl and Other Poems." 

Allen Ginsberg Howl Judgement

     Ferlinghetti requested a bench trial thinking that a judge might be more likely to favor the defendant's case than a jury.  Judge Clayton W Horn, a Republican, taught Sunday school. He had once sentenced sentenced five female thieves – the newspapers called them “lady shoplifters” – to attend a showing of the movie “The Ten Commandments” and to write essays on the epic film’s lesson when it came to stealing. 

     On October 3, 1959 Horn ruled and sided with the defense. In his ruling he said, “The first part of ‘Howl’ presents a picture of a nightmare world... The second part is an indictment of those elements in modern society destructive of the best qualities of human nature; such elements are predominantly identified as materialism, conformity and mechanization leading toward war…"

Full transcript of decision

Ginsberg reading Howl (link to words →  Howl)


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November 1 Peace Love Activism

November 1 Peace Love Activism

US Labor History

Nation’s First General Strike
November 1, 1835: in the nation’s first general strike for a 10-hour day, 300 armed Irish longshoremen marched through the streets of Philadelphia calling on other workers to join them.  Some 20,000 did, from clerks to bricklayers to city employees and other occupations. The city announced a 10-hour workday within the week; private employers followed suit three weeks later. (see, March 31, 1840)

Native Americans

The Carlisle Indian School
November 1, 1879: founded by Richard Henry Pratt, The Carlisle Indian School formally opened (in Carlisle, PA) with an enrollment of 147 students. The youngest was six and the eldest twenty-five, but the majority were teenagers. Two-thirds were the children of Plains Indian tribal leaders. The first class was made up of eighty-four Lakota, fifty-two Cheyenne, Kiowa and Pawnee, and eleven Apache. Pratt believed that the only road to success for the Native Americans was to assimmilate them to the American culture. He was often quoted as saying "Kill the Indian, save the man". NPR's Radio Lab did a piece on the school. The following picture comparisons are from RL's site. Click for others >>> Radio Lab) (see July 20, 1881)

November 1 Peace Love Activism
Tom Torlino before

November 1 Peace Love Activism
Tom Torlino after

November 1 Peace Love Activism
Sioux children before

November 1 Peace Love Activism
Sioux children after

Black History

Louisiana Sugar Workers Lynched
November 1, 1887: thirty-seven Black striking Louisiana sugar workers were murdered when Louisiana militia, aided by bands of "prominent citizens," shoot unarmed workers trying to get a dollar-per-day wage. Two strike leaders are lynched. (LH, see March 12, 1888; BH, see July 10, 1890)
Poll Taxes
November 1, 1890: Mississippi adopted a new state constitution aimed at keeping African Americans from voting through poll taxes, literacy tests and other means. Many other states followed Mississippi’s lead. (see Nov 4)
Frank Sinatra/School Desegregation
On September 18, 1945 in Gary, Indiana, mounting pressure from civic groups such as the League of Women Voters, YWCA, and Gary Teacher’s Union to desegregate schools pushed district officials to make another attempt (see September, 1927) at integration. Again, white students took to the streets en masse in an effort to curb integration. On November 1, 1945, in an effort to win over white students against school desegregation, Gary officials invited Frank Sinatra to perform. Though very popular with teenagers, Sinatra’s appeal failed to get students back to school. (BH, see Dec 16; SD, see Sept 1946)
Bus seating
seatingNovember 1, 1960: all interstate buses were required to display a certificate that read: “Seating aboard this vehicle is without regard to race, color, creed, or national origin, by order of the Interstate Commerce Commission.” That same day, SNCC workers Charles Sherrod and Cordell Reagon as well as nine Chatmon Youth Council members tested new ICC rules at Trailways bus station in Albany, Ga. (see Nov 14)
Freedom Riders
November 1, 1961: November 1st was the day the Interstate Commerce Commission's new prohibition against segregated bus terminals was to go into effect. This was the ruling won by the Freedom Rides. The Albany, Georgia bus terminal was located in the Black section of town and on November 1st — with a neighborhood crowd watching — nine Black students attempted to use the terminal's "white-only" facilities. As planned, they leave without being arrested when ordered out by the police and then filed immediate complaints with the ICC under the new ruling. (BH, see Nov 9; FR, see Nov 29)
“Freedom Vote”
November 1, 1963: the “Freedom Vote” on this day was a mock election in Mississippi involving officially unregistered African American voters. The event was organized by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) to dramatize the fact that only 7 percent of the potentially eligible African-American voters were actually registered.

The Freedom Vote was considered a success by SNCC leaders, and it inspired the idea for a larger effort in the summer of 1964. This became Freedom Summer, in which about 1,000 white northern college students were recruited to help African-Americans register to vote. (see Nov 19)
SOUTH AFRICA/APARTHEID
November 1, 1995 South Africans voted in their first all-race local government elections, completing the destruction of the apartheid system. (see October 30, 1996)

Feminism

Women’s Health
November 1, 1921: The American Birth Control League was created through a merger of the National Women’s Health League and the Voluntary Parenthood League. Led by Margaret Sanger, the new league became the leading Women’s Health advocacy group in the country. The American Women’s Health League eventually became the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (WH, see Nov 11; League, see January 18, 1939).
Early Money Is Like Yeast
November 1, 1986: EMILY's (Early Money Is Like Yeast) List was established in 1985 to help elect pro-choice Democratic women to office in the 1986 election. By November 1986, EMILY's List raised over $350,000 for two Senate candidates. (see Oct 3, 1988)

Fair Housing

Rent control
November 1, 1943: the federal Office of Price Administration first established rent control in wartime New York City. 
McCarthy kickbacks
From 1947 – 1949: Joe McCarthy accepted kickbacks from Pepsi Cola totaling $20,000 in exchange for helping Pepsi to circumvent the post-war sugar rationing.   He also received another $10,000 from entrepreneurs in the pre-fabricated housing industry.  Shortly thereafter, McCarthy joined the Senate Housing Committee and went on the road to speak out against public housing for veterans, extolling the benefits of the pre-fabricated home and offering it as an alternative. (FH, see May 3, 1948: RS, see Feb 17)

The Red Scare & the Cold War

Free Speech
November 1, 1948: the famous Smith Act trial began, one of the major events of the Cold War, involved the prosecution of eleven leaders of the Communist Party for violating the Smith Act (enacted on June 29, 1940), which outlawed advocating the overthrow of the government. (FS, see Dec 10; Red Scare, see Nov 2; trial, see October 10, 1949)
H-Bomb
November 1 Peace Love Activism
First H-Bomb
November 1, 1952: U.S. detonated the first hydrogen bomb at Enewetak Atoll in the Marshall Islands.(see December 13)
November 1 Peace Love Activism
The first thermonuclear weapon (hydrogen bomb), code-named Mike, was detonated at Enewetak atoll in the Marshall Islands, Nov. 1, 1952. Photograph taken at an altitude of 3,600 metres (12,000 feet) 80 km (50 miles) from the detonation site.
 Women Strike for Peace

November 1 Peace Love Activism

November 1, 1961: thousands of women throughout the United States demonstrated in protest against nuclear weapons. The rallies were organized by Women Strike for Peace, founded by Bella Abzug and Dagmar Wilson. WSP's guiding statement, adopted in 1962: "We are women of all races, creeds and political persuasions. We are dedicated to the purpose of complete and general disarmament. We demand that nuclear tests be banned forever, that the arms race end and the world abolish all weapons of destruction under United Nations safeguards. We cherish the right and accept the responsibility to act to influence the course of goverment for peace. ... We join with women throughout the world to challenge the right of any nation or group of nations to hold the power of life and death over the world." (see May 31, 1962)

TERRORISM

November 1, 1950: two Puerto Rican nationalists tried to force their way into Blair House in Washington to assassinate President Harry S. Truman. One of the assailants was killed. (see March 1, 1954)

Algeria

November 1, 1954, Algeria began a rebellion against French rule. (see July 5, 1962)

INDEPENDENCE DAY

November 1, 1981: Antigua and Barbuda independent of the United Kingdom. (see September 2, 1983)

Maastricht Treaty

November 1, 1993: the Maastricht Treaty took effect, formally establishing the European Union.

Technological Milestone

November 1, 1954: jointly produced by Texas Instruments and TV accessory manufacturer IDEA (Industrial Development Engineering Associates) Corp, the TR-1 was the first consumer device to employ transistors went on sale at a price of $49.95 (less battery). One year after the release of the TR-1, sales approached the 100,000 mark.

Measuring 5×3×1.25 inches and weighing 12.5 ounces, the Regency TR-1 was designed to receive AM broadcasts only. It kicked off a worldwide demand for small and portable electronic products, (see Dec 23)

November 1 Music et al

Howl
November 1 Peace Love Activism
Allen Ginsberg, far left, reading in San Francisco on Nov. 20, 1955, and center center, in NYC’s Washington Square Park on Aug. 28, 1966.
November 1, 1956, Lawrence Ferlinghetti published Howl and Other Poems by Allen Ginsberg. (see June 3, 1957)
Beatles in trouble
November 1, 1960: furious that The Beatles had made a verbal agreement to play at rival Peter Eckhorn's Top Ten Club, Kaiserkeller owner Bruno Koschmider terminated their contract. Despite this, they continued to perform at the club for another three weeks. An additonal reason why Koschmider wanted them out: at 17 years of age, George Harrison was too young to be working in the club. Eckhorn’s statement read: I the undersigned hereby give notice to Mr George Harrison and to Beatles' Band to leave [the Club] on November 30th, 1960. The notice is given to the above by order of the Public Authorities who have discovered that Mr George Harrison is only 17 (seventeen) years of age. (see Nov 20)
News Music/Bob Marley
November 1, 1964: Bob Marley’s Wailers's first single, 'Simmer Down', reached Number 1 in Jamaica's JBC Radio Chart.

News Music/Buffy Sainte-Marie
In 1964 Buffy Sainte-Marie’s first album released. It’s My Way (see Dec 22)

“Wild Thing”
November 1, 1965, Jordan Christopher & The Wild Ones release “Wild Thing.”  Written by Chip Taylor (born James Wesley Voight, brother of actor Jon Voight; uncle, therefore, of Angelina Jolie).  (see July 25, 1966)
“Wonderwall Music”
November 1, 1968: George Harrison became the first member of The Beatles to release a solo project, an LP called "Wonderwall Music.” 

Paul McCartney’s January 1967 The Family Way soundtrack recording is sometimes considered to be the first Beatles solo album, but most critics consider Wonderwall Music to be the first, because it was released under George Harrison's name while The Family Way was credited to George Martin.

 The songs, recorded in December 1967 in England, and January 1968 in Bombay, India were virtually all instrumental, except for some non-English vocals and a slowed-down spoken word track. "Wonderwall Music" is notable for being the first official LP release on Apple Records. (see Nov 8)
Abbey Road
November 1 – December 26, 1969: Abbey Road  the Billboard #1 Album. The Beatles’ Let It Be album will be released on May 8, 1970 and be the Billboard #1 album from June 13 – July 10, 1970. Let It Be was actually recorded in before Abbey Road in February 1968, January – February 1969. Since most of Let It Be was recorded in January 1969, before the recording and release of the  album Abbey Road, some critics argue that Abbey Road should be considered the group's final album and Let It Be the penultimate. (see November 26)
Elvis Presley
November 1 – 7, 1969: after seven years off the top of the charts, Elvis Presley's "Suspicious Minds” is #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. It will be his last #1 during his lifetime. (see December 21, 1971)

FREE SPEECH

United States v. 31 Photographs
November 1, 1957: in the case of United States v. 31 Photographs, a U.S. District Court judge cleared the way for importation of 31 photographs that the Alfred Kinsey had sought to import for his scientific research on sexuality. The judge ruled that the photographs could be brought into the U.S. because they were material for scientific study and not public consumption. The decision ended a three-year battle over the photographs.

While the decision was a victory for Kinsey and his research, it was a very limited one with respect to censorship of sexually related materials, given its narrow focus on research materials. (see May 6, 1959)
MPPA
November 1, 1968: the Motion Picture Producers Association (MPPA), struggling to adapt to both anti-censorship court decisions and more tolerant public attitudes regarding sexuality in the movies — but not willing to abandon all restraints — put into effect a new movie ratings system. The categories were G, PG, R and X. (see Nov 12)

Clarence Earl Gideon

November 1, 1963: in a speech before The New England Conference on the Defense of Indigent Persons accused of Crime, Attorney General Rober Kennedy stated: "If an obscure Florida convict named Clarence Earl Gideon had not sat down in prison with a pencil and paper to write a letter to the Supreme Court, and if the Supreme Court had not taken the trouble to look for merit in that one crude petition among all the bundles of mail it must receive every day, the vast machinery of American law would have gone on functioning undisturbed.” (see January 18, 1972)
November 1 Peace Love Activism

Vietnam

South Vietnam Leadership
November 1, 1963: South Vietnamese general Duong Van Minh, acting with the support of the CIA, launched a military coup which removed Ngo Dinh Diem from power. (see Nov 2)
Bien Hoa Air Base attack
November 1, 1964: Two days before the U.S. presidential election, Vietcong mortars shell Bien Hoa Air Base near Saigon. Four Americans are killed, 76 wounded. Five B-57 bombers are destroyed, and 15 are damaged.  (Enemy Power Grows in Vietnam) (see Nov 10)
Operation Rolling Thunder
November 1 Peace Love Activism
Operation Rolling Thunder
November 1, 1968: after three-and-a-half years, Operation Rolling Thunder comes to an end. In total, the campaign had cost more than 900 American aircraft, 818 pilots dead or missing, and hundreds in captivity. Nearly 120 Vietnamese planes had been destroyed in air combat or accidents, or by friendly fire. According to U.S. estimates, 182,000 North Vietnamese civilians were killed. Twenty thousand Chinese support personnel were also casualties of the bombing. (see Nov 5)

LGBTQ

November 1, 2010: The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals stays Judge Virginia Phillips' injunction on Don't ask, don't Tell pending appeal. (see Nov 12)

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October 7 Peace Love Activism

October 7 Peace Love Activism

FEMINISM

Voting Rights

October 7 Peace Love Activism

October 7, 1918: National Women’s Party picketed with banners in front of U.S. Capitol and Senate Office Building. Pickets arrested daily and released without charges. Throughout rest of Oct. and Nov., pickets harassed by unruly crowds and manhandled by police. (see Dec 2)
Women in service academies
October 7, 1975: President Ford approved a public law granting women entrance into Army, Navy, and Air Force academies for the first time beginning in the fall of 1976. (see Oct 15)

The Red Scare, McCarthyism, and the Cold War

October 7, 1949: less than five months after Great Britain, the United States, and France established the Federal Republic of Germany in West Germany, the Democratic Republic of Germany was proclaimed within the Soviet occupation zone. The  West criticized the Republic as an un-autonomous Soviet creation, (see Nov 2)
Windscale nuclear reactor (UK)
October 7, 1957: a fire in the graphite-core reactor in Cumbria results in a limited release of radioactivity (INES Level 5). The sale of milk from nearby farms was banned for a month. The reactor could not be salvaged and was buried in concrete. A second reactor on the site is also shut down and the site decontaminated. Subsequently part of the site is renamed Sellafield and new nuclear reactors are built. (NYT article) (see Dec 17)
Cuban Missile Crisis
October 7, 1962: Cuban President Osvaldo Dorticós spoke at the UN General Assembly: "If ... we are attacked, we will defend ourselves. I repeat, we have sufficient means with which to defend ourselves; we have indeed our inevitable weapons, the weapons, which we would have preferred not to acquire, and which we do not wish to employ." (see Cuban Missile Crisis for full story)
Nuclear test ban treaty

October 7 Peace Love Activism

October 7, 1963: President John F. Kennedy signed the documents of ratification for a nuclear test ban treaty with Britain and the Soviet Union. (CW, see Nov 18; NN, see January 29, 1964)
October 7 Peace Love Activism

October 7 Music et al

Howl

October 7 Peace Love Activism

October 7, 1955: Allen Ginsberg read his poem “Howl” for the first time to an audience at the Six Gallery in San Francisco. "Howl" is considered to be one of the great works of American literature. It came to be associated with the group of writers known as the Beat Generation, which included Jack Kerouac and William S. Burroughs. (see November 1, 1956)

WNEW-FM
October 7, 1967: WNEW-FM’s Pete Fornatelle interviewed Rosko regarding his Oct 2 resignation from WOR-FM. [see Oct 29]
see John Can Stay for more

October 7 Peace Love Activism

October 7, 1975, The Beatles post break-up: the NY State Supreme Court voted to reverse John’s deportation order.  Judge Irving Kaufman wrote "The courts will not condone selective deportation based upon secret political grounds...Lennon's four-year battle to remain in our country is testimony to his faith in this American dream." (see April 24, 1976)

BLACK HISTORY

Freedom Day

October 7 Peace Love Activism

October 7, 1963: in what would be known as "Freedom Day," about 350 blacks line up to register to vote at the Dallas County (Alabama) Courthouse. Registrars go as slowly as possible and take a two-hour lunch break. Few manage to register, most of those are denied, but the protest is considered a huge victory by civil rights advocates. (see Oct 8)
United States versus Cecil Price et al.
October 7, 1967: trial in the case of United States versus Cecil Price et al. began in the Meridian courtroom of Judge William Cox.  Chief Prosecutor John Doar and other government attorneys had reason to be concerned about Cox.  Cox, appointed as an effort to appease powerful Judiciary Committee Chairman (and former roommate of Cox at Ole Miss) Senator James Eastland, had been a constant source of problems for Justice Department lawyers (especially John Doar) who were seeking to enforce civil rights laws in Mississippi.  In one incident, Judge Cox referred to a group of African Americans set to testify in a voting rights case as "a bunch of chimpanzees."

A jury of seven white men and five white women, ranging in ages from 34 to 67, was selected. Defense attorneys exercised peremptory challenges against all seventeen potential black jurors.  A white man, who admitted under questioning by Robert Hauberg, the U.S. Attorney for Mississippi, that he had been a member of the KKK "a couple of years ago," was challenged for cause.  Judge Cox denied the challenge. (Wikipedia entry) (see Oct 20)
Emmett Till
October 7, 2008: President Bush signed the Emmett Till Unsolved Civil Rights Crime Act of 2007 It tasked theJustice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the FBI with reviewing, investigating and assessing for prosecutive merit more than 100 unsolved civil rights era homicides. (BH, see Nov 4; ET, see Emmett Till)

1964 World Series

October 7 - 15 , 1964: World Series St. Louis Cardinals against N Y Yankees,  Cardinals defeated the Yankees in seven games. It was the last Yankee World Series appearance until 1976

War in Afghanistan

October 7, 2001: the armed forces of the US, the UK, Australia, and the Afghan United Front launched Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. (see Oct 22)

Iraq War II

October 7, 2004:  a CIA report concluded that Saddam Hussein did not possess stockpiles of illicit weapons at the time of the U.S. invasion in March 2003 and had not begun any program to produce them. [CNN, 10/7/04] (see January 12, 2005)

Sexual Abuse of Children

October 7, 2002: a commission appointed by Cardinal Bernard F. Law to help prevent sexual abuse by priests recommended that the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston compile a registry of accused priests and pass information about them to employers. The commission also recommended monitoring accused priests after they were removed from their jobs and reporting information about their work, living situations and any new complaints of abuse to an independent review board of lay experts. (see Nov 3)

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