There are two new and excellent books about the communal experience of the
1960s and 1970s.
FREE LAND: FREE LOVE: TALES OF A WILDERNESS COMMUNE, Edited by Don Monkerud
(new to this list), Malcolm Terence, and Susan Keese, published by Black
Bear Mining and Publishing Company.
THE 60s COMMUNES; HIPPIES AND BEYOND by Timothy Miller, Syracuse U. Press.
Free Land is about the Black Bear commune in the wilds of northern
California. The articles and essays are written by members of the commune
during its early days and really capture the experience of trying to
reinvent civilized living anew. Black Bear was really rugged and rural. I
lived on a New England commune that was pretty primitive, but the folks at
Black Bear made us look like suburban day-trippers. (We at least had an
actual outhouse!) Yet, the issues that riveted them -- and the way they
dealt with them -- are similar to my experience in Vermont. Black Bear
absorbed many currents from the new left to the new age and the book is
Don, I hope you'll tell folks how to buy it.
The Miller book is an intelligent and sympathetic overview of the communal
movement when it was at it's height. Miller interviewed many communal
veterans (me included) and knows the literature. The book covers a lot of
ground and is true to the experience.
-- Marty Jezer * 22 Prospect St. * Brattleboro, VT 05301 * p/f 802 257-5644
Author: Stuttering: A Life Bound Up in Words (Basic Books) Abbie Hoffman: American Rebel (Rutgers University Press) The Dark Ages: Life in the USA, 1945-1960 (South End Press) Rachel Carson [American Women of Achievement Series] (Chelsea House) Check out my web page: http://www.sover.net/~mjez To subscribe to my Friday commentary, simply request to be put on my mailing list. It's free!
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