This book pays homage to the counterculture movement through the words and photographs of a select gathering of people who lived it. At its height in the late 1960s and early 1970s, the counterculture movement permeated every region of America as thousands of activists took on the establishment. Although counterculture has often been trivialized as "dirty hippies" and "sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll," committed activists formed powerful strands of resistance to the political/military/industrial complex. American Indians, Hispanos, Blacks, and Anglos joined in marches and protests--often at their peril. Veterans of Haight-Ashbury in San Francisco, communards in northern New Mexico, practitioners of drug-induced mysticism, disciplined seekers of spiritual awakening, back-to-the-landers, defenders of wilderness--counterculturalists all--questioned, reframed, and redefined American and global perspectives that remain to this day. The American Southwest became a haven for individuals from both coasts seeking refuge in this vast landscape. Many found an affinity with the native cultures and local inhabitants who were already here. Others joined forces to combat the Vietnam War, racial discrimination, and pillaging of the environment. Still others founded communes based on diverse cultures of practice. Movement leaders organized community events, protests, and spoke for their generation; many used their talents as writers, musicians, artists, and photographers to express their angst and promote change. Jack Loeffler draws from his extensive archive of recorded interviews and transcribed conversations with contemporaries--among them writers, artists, elders, activists, and scholars--including Philip Whalen, Gary Snyder, Edward Abbey, Shonto Begay, Camillus Lopez, Tara Evonne Trudell, Roberta Blackgoat, Richard Grow, Alvin Josephy, David Brower, Dave Foreman, Elinor Ostrom, Fritjof Capra, and Melissa Savage. The book includes personal essays by Yvonne Bond, Peter Coyote, Lisa Law, Peter Rowan, Siddiq Hans von Briesen, Art Kopecky, Bill Steen, Sylvia Rodríguez, Enrique R. Lamadrid, Levi Romero, Rina Swentzell, Gary Paul Nabhan, Meredith Davidson, and Jack Loeffler. It includes photographs by Lisa Law, Seth Roffman, Terrence Moore, and others.
Jack Loeffler is an aural historian, environmentalist, writer, radio producer, and sound-collage artist. He is the author or editor of many books, including Thinking Like a Watershed: Voices from the West, Survival Along the Continental Divide: An Anthology of Interviews, and Adventures with Ed: A Portrait of Abbey (all from UNM Press).