Paul Di Filippo (pgdf) wrote in theinferior4,
Paul Di Filippo

Sixties Novels, Part 21

US: THE PAPERBACK MAGAZINE, Number 2, edited by Richard Goldstein, Bantam, 1969

Here's the difference between the Sixties and the Oughties in a nutshell.

In 1969, there was an US MAGAZINE that featured armed student revolutionaries on its cover.

In 2007, there's an US MAGAZINE that features flash-in-the-pan celebrities and their faux problems on its cover.

Not that the 1969 version wasn't as potentially bogus and consumerist as the 2007 version. But it sure seems to me that the focus of the marketplace and readers was slightly more interesting and vital back then.

There appear to have been three issues of US. Here are the other two covers.

The publication was plainly a typically Sixties experiment to blend the topicality and timeliness of magazines with the durability and persistence of books--an experiment that continues today.

A similar venture occured in the SF field at the time: Delany & Hacker's QUARK series.

But back to US, 1969-style.

Its editor, Richard Goldstein, went to work for THE VILLAGE VOICE, becoming executive editor before being recently let go. I assume he's also this fellow, who currently writes for THE NATION. His range of concerns seems the same left-of-center and culturally hip stuff as of yore.

Issue 2 under Goldstein's helm contains a wild-eyed assortment of articles on Dylan, feminism and revolution, by the famous and the forgotten, including Nikki Giovanni, Tom Clark, and SF's own Paul Williams. By pure synchronicity, we find a piece entitled "Jail Is Where When You Have to Go There They Have To Let You In," by one Katherine Dunn. I'm assuming this is our very own GEEK LOVE Katherine Dunn, guest-blogging here soon, at age 24, and I'll be eager to ask her about her memories of this artifact.

The final entry is a story by one Lewis MacAdams that appears to be postapocalyptic SF.

The book-a-zine is visually wild, with photos dropped in at all angles, and cartoons by the famed Victor Moscoso.

There's even a flipbook feature! A hippie male goes through a "present arms" drill with his rifle if you flip the upper-right-hand corner of the pages.

Now, wouldn't you like to be picking up this magazine every week instead of the one that features, in the words of Apu from THE SIMPSONS, "Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman staring at me with their dead eyes!"
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