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May 13, 1967 - Image 10

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Michigan Daily, 1967-05-13
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A- Cloud of Dust and a Hearty "Sieg Heil"

PAPERBACK PLAYBAC

Hell's Angels, by Hunter S. Thomp-
son. Random House. $4.95.
Modern Day Huns on high-
powered motorcycles, they rape and
pillage their way through Califor-
nia. No better than animals, they
have no regard for those sacred in-
stitutions of showers and deodorant.
These are only a few of the notions
associated with the Hell's Angels..
Now at last someone has set us
straight.
Hunter S. Thompson's report, if it
is not indeed biased in favor of so-
ciety or the Angels, deserves an
award for the best written account
of one of the most feared twen-
tieth-century o u t 1 a w gangs. As
many as two hundred bikes on one
run, a rolling zoo on wheels with
beards dyed green, the ever-present
colors of a winged death's head
with "Hell's Angels" written above,
the swastikas and oil-soaked levis,
these are the "one-percenters," and
they are every bit as real as the re-
cord shows.
The Hell's Angels have done al-
most all-'of the feats attributed to
them. The truth, however, has often
been obscured by sensational press
accounts and the cries of outraged
citizenry. The Angels are not mis-
guided youths who champion some
rebel cause. For one thing, most of
these "misguided youths" are in
their twenties and a few are in their
thirties. No, the Hell's Angels are
genuine outlaws, outcasts from so-
ciety:
Their real motivation is a instine-
tive certainty as to what the score
really is. They are out of the ball-
game and they know it... But in-
stead of submitting quietly to their
collective fate, they have made it
4the basis for a full-time social ven-
detta. They don't expect to win any-
thing, but on the other hand, they
have nothing to lose.

In a society dominated by the ma-
chine and the skilled technician, the
unskilled laborer is out in the cold.
This has been the fate of most of
the members of the club. Coming
predominantly from the lower class,
with fathers who were also unskill-
ed laborers, these outcasts find a
real sense of belonging in being an
Angel. For them, there is no other
way than their strange fraternal so-
ciety with rituals and codes.
One of the hardest things to un-.
derstand about the Angels is their
brutal beatings. But when you are
against society and the Main Cop,

everyone is a threat to your securi-
ty. The Angels have a total retali-
ation ethic and the club's motto is
"All on One and One on All." No-
body ever picks a fight with just
one Angel. They are sheer muscle
and guts, and if you are going to do
anything you had better be able to
take it. Pity and a hospital bill for
the man who puts up a front and
then can't muster enough support
in the time it takes to break a beer
bottle or unravel one of those
chains the Angels wear for belts.
One of the book's most interest-
ing discussions shows the extent to

Projection Booth

(Continued from page one)
as a weapon should be held, elated
by the knowledge that you have
gone some of the way towards the
mastery of it." You shoot through
the ceiling. Uncle Elia and Elf race
up the stairs. "You aim at the open
door... where you judge his heart,
will be... He stands frames in the
doorway... You pull the trigger."
He is not dead; you grazed his
left arm-pit. He and Elf scurry
about, "trying to convince Childers
that is was all a pre-arranged game,
ending in an unforeseen accident.. .
The sudden comedy of it takes you
by surprise. You laugh until your
throat aches. You wonder where
you have been. But it no longer oc-
curs to you to ask who you are. In
some odd way, you seem to have in-
vented yourself by your act."
So addressed, the reader is pro-
voked to a double response. Emo-
tionally, he is involved with Bruno,
and shares in his experience of suf-
fering and growth. But at the same
time, in a kind of self-defense, he
withholds from complete identifica-
tion with Bruno. This last is ex-
tremely important, because it pre-
vents the reader from being blind-
folded by Bruno's limitations. Lack-
ing integrity himself, Bruno cannot
appreciate it in others. For him, his
father, his mother, Childers, Jane
and Uncle Elia are little more than
separate collections of details
clumped around a mysterious supe-
riority that in the men threatens
PICTURE CREDITS -
Beita Lewis ..................Page 1
Sarah Burns .......... .Page 3
Bob Griess............Pages 6, 7
him, and in the women- promises
protection. The reader, whenever
other people appear, finds it natu-
ral to depart from Bruno long
enough to arrange the same details
into much more meaningful person-
alities. He can then make sense of
their gestures toward one another -
and Bruno; he sees what they mean
to each other, and what Bruno,
means to each of them. He partici-
pates intellectually, understanding
how Bruno's development is the
product of these interrelationships,'
which are chaos to Bruno.

Dostoivsky, in the nineteenth
century, wrote of men sucked into
Chaos by their own overweening in-
tellectualism. His success, as in
Crime and Punishment, rested
largely in his ability to preserve the
involved reader's sympathy for such
a character; and when this failed,
as in parts of Notes from Under-
ground, positive feeling vanished,
and the reader now finds himself
wading through dull and difficult
wordiness.
In the twentieth century Everett
writes of a man drawn from chaos
toward spontaneity and self-respect.
His success with the involved read-
er depends upon his ability to pre-
vent complete sympathy; and when
he fails, as in the opening of the
first bedroom scene, intellectual ac-
tivity vanishes, and the reader is
plunged into pornography. These
are brief moments, few and far be-
tween, but they are costly, and for
all but the most sophisticated read-
ers will obscure much that is of real
worth.
Dostoevsky, along with many pro-
found thinkers of his day and ours,
sees a presumptuous modern civili-
zation toppling over in the quake of
unheeded natural forces. A symbol
for this is St. Petersberg, built on a
swamp at the expense of peasant
lives, and full of rootless people. He
felt that the reality of the irrational
Man must bring to confusion all
intellectual constructs. Peter Ever-
ett tells another story. He reminds
me of the movement in post-
existentialist philosophy that calls
for "a new optimism." The notions
of chaos implicit in his novel-the
collection of sense experiences and
memory fragments, the dissolution
of individuality ' into energy flux
and of personality into relationship,
the sexual function that Freud un-
covered in every manifestation of
human energy-and what he builds
with, not against, or even upon.
With them he builds a statement
about integration of personality and
spontaneous action, maturity and
wisdom and control. Here in eii-
bryo is a human construction that.
just might stand up to the tribunal
of irrational forces.
Betty Arnholt
Miss Arnholt is a second-year student
majoring in English at Valpqraiso Uni-
yersity.

which the press has influenced the
group. The author suggests that
publicity has virtually made the
Hell's Angels what they are today.
The membership was dwindling -
then came the widely publicized
Monterey Rape of 1965. The Oak-
land chapter swelled with refugees
from other chapters, and every
Genghis Khan on a motorcycle was
out to show some class and wear the
colors.
In turning the heat on, the press
gave them fame. Press interviews
with m i c r o p h o n e s and camera
equipment were common. We may
deplore their actions, but there is
something about bikes (their sound
and power) and the open defiance
of the Angels' actions that appeal to
a strange element in all of us. We
find their crime rate appalling, but
by all means pour blood and gore
on the tube, in novels, and (as long
as it's far removed) in the newspa-
pers.
The Hell's Angels are not, then,
just an isolated phenomenon. They
won't go away with the passage of
time, for other Angels will take
their place. It's not really "them"
that we should be afraid of, but the
Rising Tide. And as Mr. Thompson
carefully reminds us, "Far from
being freaks, the Hell's Angels are
a logical product of the culture that
now claims to be shocked at their
existence."
Jay John Fox
Mr. Fox is a third-year student major-
ing in English at the Illinois Institute
of Technology.
The Midwest Literary Review
Editors-in-chief: .Edward W. Hearne
Bryan It. Dunlap
Executive Editor: . David H. Richter
Advertising Manager: Wayne Meyer
Art Editor............ Bob Griess
Michigan Editor ...... Liesa Mtros
Illinois Institute of Technology
Editor.....,...........Jay Fox
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Loyola Editor:...........Bill Clohesy
Minnesota Editor......Hans Knoep
Northwestern Editor . red Eychaner
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-Diment
Valparaiso Editor:. Janet Kanten
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Mary Sue. Leighton
Ellen Williams
Jeanne Safer
The Midwest Literary Review, Circulation 7,0,
Is publshed six times per academic year by
The Chicago Literary Review. it is distrbute
by the Michigan Daily, the Chicago Maroon, the
Illinois Institute of Technology Technology Rew,
the Illinois Teacher's College (South Camps)
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6063. Phone: Ml 3-0W0, ext. 3265, 3266, 3269,
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1967 by The Chicago Uterary Review. All Rights
reserved..

Spring seems to have invigorated
paperback publishers, for their
newest releases include an inordi-
nate number of intriguing and
impressive volumes.
The most exciting fiction to be re-
printed recently is Penguin's new
t r a n s 1 a t i o n of A.-J. Huysmans'
Against Nature (A Rebours in
French), which Oscar Wilde's Do-
rian-Grey describes as the strangest
book he ever read-an elegant, de-
cadent, and distressingly contempo-
rary novel.
Penguin has initiated a new ser-
ies of international poetry, prose
and drama of the last fifteen years
hitherto unavailable in English.
Three of the volumes designed to
combat cultural complacency are
Writing Today in Africa, Italian
Writing Today, and German Writ-
ing Today. These provide a wel-
come antidc.a to Leonard Cohen's
repulsive and pretentious Beautiful
Losers (Bantam).
Bob Dylan by Daniel Kramer
(Citadel) is an idolotrous photo-
essay of smirks and grimaces. An
illustrated anthology of Happenings
by Michael Kirby presents scripts
and production notes-curious, but
doing little to elucidate the art
form. The humor in Jules Feiffer's
Marriage Manual (Random) is pain-
fully personal, more cathartic than
comic.
Haiku master Matsuo Basho's an-
guished and graceful Narrow Road
to the Deep North and Other Travel

Sketches (Penguin), in which he
subtly fuses poetry, prose and philo-
sophy, has been newly translated.
Appearing in Penguin's Modern Eu-
ropean Poets series is the taut and
vivid verse of Czech poet-scientist
Miroslav Holub. Harper Square Gal-
er). Sir Richard Burton's fine old
translation, with commentary, of
the Kasidah of his friend and men-
tor Haji Abdu El-Yezdi, has been
reissued by Citadel. This existen-

...TE.......E.X..H A
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tialist sage of Islam who "had every
talent save that of using his, tal-
ents,"- asserts that self-cultivation is
the sole and sufficient goal of hu-
man existence.
Among political science publica-
tions, Howard Zinn's Vietnam: The
Logic of Withdrawal (Beacon) offers
a cogent case for ending the war.
In Marxism: 100 Years in the
Life of a Doctrine (Delta), Bertram
Wolfe charts the course of the ide-
ology. Murray Kempton's Part of
OurTime (Delta) studies American
Communism in the thirties with wit

and aplc
Soviet di
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All Books Reviewed In This Issue Of The Chicago Literary Re
Available At The UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO BOOKSTOR

J. William Fulbright: The Arrogance of Power
Justin Kaplan: Mr. Clemens and Mark Twain
James Merrill: Nights and Days
Bernard Malamud: The Fixer
Frank Kermode: The Sense of an Ending
Ned Rorem: Music from Inside Out
Hunter Thompson: Hell's Angels
Claude Levi-Strauss: The Savage Mind
Oscar Lewis: La Vida
Peter Gay: The Enlightenment

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May, 1967 0 MIDWEST

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