'Hot damn! Let us rumble, keep going and don't slow down ... let's have a little fun ...' In his much-anticipated memoir, Hunter S. Thompson looks back on a long and productive life. It is a story of crazed road trips fuelled by bourbon and black acid, of insane judges and giant porcupines, of girls, guns, explosives and, of course, bikes. He also takes on his dissolute youth in Louisville; his adventures in pornography; campaigning for local office in Aspen; and what it's like to accidentally be accused of trying to kill Jack Nicholson. Alongside this 'depraved and terrifying adventure', Hunter S. Thompson exposes the darkness at the heart of America today: a time when the 'goofy child President' and the New Dumb have taken control, and the nation thralls to Bush's War on Terror, War on Evil, War on Iraq, and even War on Fat ... a time when fear and loathing are greater than ever.
Long before the official establishment of the Commonwealth, intrepid pioneers ventured west of the Allegheny Mountains into an expansive, alluring wilderness that they began to call Kentucky. After blazing trails, clearing plots, and surviving innumerable challenges, a few adventurers found time to pen celebratory tributes to their new homeland. In the two centuries that followed, many of the world’s finest writers, both native Kentuckians and visitors, have paid homage to the Bluegrass State with the written word. In The Kentucky Anthology, acclaimed author and literary historian Wade Hall has assembled an unprecedented and comprehensive compilation of writings pertaining to Kentucky and its land, people, and culture. Hall’s introductions to each author frame both popular and lesser-known selections in a historical context. He examines the major cultural and political developments in the history of the Commonwealth, finding both parallels and marked distinctions between Kentucky and the rest of the United States. While honoring the heritage of Kentucky in all its glory, Hall does not blithely turn away from the state’s most troubling episodes and institutions such as racism, slavery, and war. Hall also builds the argument, bolstered by the strength and significance of the collected writings, that Kentucky’s best writers compare favorably with the finest in the world. Many of the authors presented here remain universally renowned and beloved, while others have faded into the tides of time, waiting for rediscovery. Together, they guide the reader on a literary tour of Kentucky, from the mines to the rivers and from the deepest hollows to the highest peaks. The Kentucky Anthology traces the interests and aspirations, the achievements and failures and the comedies and tragedies that have filled the lives of generations of Kentuckians. These diaries, letters, speeches, essays, poems, and stories bring history brilliantly to life. Jesse Stuart once wrote, “If these United States can be called a body, Kentucky can be called its heart.” The Kentucky Anthology captures the rhythm and spirit of that heart in the words of its most remarkable chroniclers.
The dissident voice in US culture might almost be said to have been born with the territory. Its span runs from Roger Williams to Thoreau, Anne Bradstreet to Gertrude Stein, Ambrose Bierce to the New Journalism, The Beats to the recent Bad Subjects cyber-crowd. This new study analyses three recent literary tranches in the tradition: a re-envisioning of the whole Beat web or circuit; a consortium of postwar "outrider" voices – Hunter Thompson to Frank Chin, Joan Didion to Kathy Acker; and a latest purview of what, all too casually, has been designated "ethnic" writing. The aim is to set up and explore these different counter-seams of modern American writing, those which sit outside, or at least awkwardly within, agreed literary canons.
For almost three decades, the Grateful Dead was America's most popular touring band. No Simple Highway is the first book to ask the simple question of why—and attempt to answer it. Drawing on new research, interviews, and a fresh supply of material from the Grateful Dead archives, author Peter Richardson vividly recounts the Dead's colorful history, adding new insight into everything from the Acid Tests to the band's formation of their own record label to their massive late career success, while probing the riddle of the Dead's vast and durable appeal. Arguing that the band successfully tapped three powerful utopian ideals—for ecstasy, mobility, and community—it also shows how the Dead's lived experience with these ideals struck deep chords with two generations of American youth and continues today. Routinely caricatured by the mainstream media, the Grateful Dead are often portrayed as grizzled hippy throwbacks with a cult following of burned-out stoners. No Simple Highway corrects that impression, revealing them to be one of the most popular, versatile, and resilient music ensembles in the second half of the twentieth century. The band's history has been well-documented by insiders, but its unique and sustained appeal has yet to be explored fully. At last, this legendary American musical institution is given the serious and entertaining examination it richly deserves.
We all know the name Nostradamus, but who was he really? Why did his predictions become so influential in Renaissance Europe and then keep resurfacing for nearly five centuries? And what does Nostradamus's endurance in the West say about us and our own world? In Nostradamus: How an Obscure Renaissance Astrologer Became the Modern Prophet of Doom, historian Stéphane Gerson takes readers on a journey back in time to explore the life and afterlife of Michel de Nostredame, the astrologer whose Prophecies have been interpreted, adopted by successive media, and eventually transformed into the Gospel of Doom for the modern age. Whenever we seem to enter a new era, whenever the premises of our worldview are questioned or imperiled, Nostradamus offers certainty and solace. In 1666, guests at posh English dinner parties discussed his quatrain about the Great Fire of London. In 1942, the Jewish writer Irène Némirovsky latched her hopes for survival to Nostradamus' prediction that the war would soon end. And on September 12, 2001, teenagers proclaimed on the streets of Brooklyn that "this guy, Nostradamus" had seen the 9/11 attacks coming. Through prodigious research in European and American archives, Gerson shows that Nostradamus — a creature of the modern West rather than a vestige from some antediluvian era — tells us more about our past and our present than about our future. In chronicling the life of this mystifying figure and the lasting fascination with his predictions, Gerson's book becomes a historical biography of a belief: the faith that we can know tomorrow and master our anxieties through the powers of an extraordinary but ever more elusive seer.
Bristling with inspired observations and wild anecdotes, this collection offers unique insight into the voice and mind of the inimitable Hunter S. Thompson, as recorded over the decades in the pages of Playboy, the Paris Review, Esquire, in various lectures, and in television appearances, many in print for the first time. Fearless and unsparing, the interviews detail some of the most storied episodes of Thompson’s life: his savage beating at the hands of the Hell’s Angels, his talking football with Nixon on the 1972 Campaign Trail (‘the only time in twenty years of listening to the treacherous bastard that I knew he wasn’t lying’); his razor-sharp insight into the Bush–Cheney administration, his unlikely run for Sheriff of Aspen, and his successful public battle, during the last years of his life, to free an innocent woman from prison. In addition, Hunter Thompson’s passionate tirades about journalism, culture, drugs, guns, and the law showcase his singular voice at its fiercest. Complete with an exclusive introduction by author, journalist, and cultural critic Christopher Hitchens, Ancient Gonzo Wisdom genuinely embraces the brilliance of Hunter S. Thompson – his life, his voice, and his legacy – to provide an enduring portrait of the great gonzo journalist. ‘Four years after his death, the rapid-fire wit and venom of Thompson’s writing is undiminished. Ancient Gonzo Wisdom features classic HST interviews’ GQ
The Encyclopedia of American Journalism explores the distinctions found in print media, radio, television, and the internet. This work seeks to document the role of these different forms of journalism in the formation of America's understanding and reaction to political campaigns, war, peace, protest, slavery, consumer rights, civil rights, immigration, unionism, feminism, environmentalism, globalization, and more. This work also explores the intersections between journalism and other phenomena in American Society, such as law, crime, business, and consumption. The evolution of journalism's ethical standards is discussed, as well as the important libel and defamation trials that have influenced journalistic practice, its legal protection, and legal responsibilities. Topics covered include: Associations and Organizations; Historical Overview and Practice; Individuals; Journalism in American History; Laws, Acts, and Legislation; Print, Broadcast, Newsgroups, and Corporations; Technologies.
"Gets it all in: the boozing and drugging…but also the intelligence, the loyalty, the inherent decency." —Jonathan Yardley, Washington Post Hunter S. Thompson detonated a two-ton bomb under the staid field of journalism with his magazine pieces and revelatory Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. In Outlaw Journalist, the famous inventor of Gonzo journalism is portrayed as never before. Through in-depth interviews with Thompson’s associates, William McKeen gets behind the drinking and the drugs to show the man and the writer—one who was happy to be considered an outlaw and for whom the calling of journalism was life.