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The late Peter Brocks contributions to the history of the peace movement are without parallel. Larry Gara. If you would like to authenticate using a different subscribed institution that supports Shibboleth authentication or have your own login and password to Project MUSE.
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Contact Contact Us Help. Very little attention has been given, however, to the role conscientious objectors played in preparing the ground for them.
San Francisco had been mixing the ingredients of social change for some years before the Beats arrived; Kerouac and Ginsberg and their friends had been searching for a place where their catalytic energy could take hold. It was that conjunction of opposites, of the East and West Coasts, that sparked the change, Everson said. One could conceivably make the case that without this spark the s scene in San Francisco would have been very different: that the great gatherings in the Haight-Ashbury district wouldn't have happened without Ken Kesey 's "acid tests," in which participants drank Kool-Aid laced with LSD while psychedelic images were projected onto a giant screen and music was played by a band calling themselves the Grateful Dead.
And one could say that Kesey might never have left his home in Oregon for San Francisco if he hadn't read On the Road , and that Kerouac's novel wouldn't have had the reception it did if Ginsberg's Howl hadn't already drawn attention, and that Ginsberg wouldn't have written his poem without the liberating experience of Rexroth's San Francisco Renaissance, and that Rexroth's dream would have gone nowhere without the influx of COs from the West Coast camps after the war, and that their pacifist ideals wouldn't have achieved full articulation without the cohesion and purpose of the Fine Arts at Waldport.
But this is only speculation — and can never be anything more. What we do know is that these things did happen. And it wasn't only in San Francisco. Across the country, throughout the s and beyond, as ideas of peace and nonviolence were manifested in action, the individual choices made by Waldport COs in those dark days of World War II were being repeated by others on a larger scale.
From the civil rights and feminist movements to early environmental awareness, education, conscription, incarceration, nutrition, mental and social health, communal living, art, and society — nearly all the great social and cultural changes of the s and '70s were part of life at the Waldport camp in the s. The largest issue was, of course, peace. Those of us who came of age in the s and '70s recall that famous scene when John Lennon spent a week in a Montreal hotel room, playing music and telling young people through the news cameras to do something nonviolent in protest, such as staying in bed or growing their hair for peace.
Britain's Conscientious Objectors in WWI Essay
Which brings us back to that photo I stumbled upon 20 years ago, the one of Glen Coffield looking like a crazy man. Except he wasn't crazy; he knew exactly what he was doing. Over the course of the past year, during the darkest days of World War II, he had refused to cut his hair or shave. He was doing it for peace.
Hello, Login. Howl and Other Poems Allen Ginsberg. On the Road Jack Kerouac. Post a comment:. COM Terms
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