Friday, October 5, 2007


Howl. On the website for Pacifica radio the other day you could hear Allen Ginsberg reading the poem "Howl," a landmark in literature of the twentieth century. You may have read it in a battered City Lights edition, or more recently in your Norton Anthology of Poetry in college.

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by
madness, starving hysterical naked,
dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn
looking for an angry fix,
angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly
connection to the starry dynamo in the machin-
ery of night,
"The occasion was the 50th anniversary of a court ruling that found the poem had “redeeming social importance” and was thus not obscene." NYTimes, Oct 4, 07.

But they didn't play the poem on the air, fearing the FCC's fines might shut them down. Another step backward for "freedom"? For extra credit, define "free."
Here's a link to the Pacifica broadcast "online" that they didn't air.,segment-page/station_id,4/segment_id,469/

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

About HOWL and WBAI, WBAI is bankrupt. Dan Siegel of the Pacifica National Board is corrupt. He has been temporarily placed on the national board to sabatoge the Local Station Board elections and allow the wbai and Justice and Unity corruption to continue.