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Interchange – The Whole World Is Watching: The Legacy of 1968


Our opening song is “Inflated Tear” by Roland Kirk performed in Prague in 1967…a prelude of sorts of what was to come.

Roland Kirk. Prague, 1967
Across the globe it was a year of countless uprisings. In the US it was the year of police violence against protesters at the Chicago Democratic Convention; it saw the Vietnam War’s Tet Offensive, the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Bobby Kennedy, and the COINTELPRO infiltration of the Black Panther Party and the Young Lords. And in Bloomington, Indiana, along with numerous anti-Vietnam War student protests, Ku Klux Klan members firebombed the African-American-run Black Market on Kirkwood. Inside this whirlwind of violence and upheaval the artist and the activist merged to leave a remarkable record of the radicalism of 1968.

Here is William Burroughs from “The Coming of the Purple Better One,” Esquire, published in November 1968.

The youth rebellion is a worldwide phenomenon that has not been seen before in history. I do not believe they will calm down and be ad execs at thirty as the Establishment would like us to believe. Millions of young people all over the world are fed up with shallow unworthy authority running on a platform of bullshit.

And yet five decades after the civil rights movement, American society remains hierarchical, exclusionary, and stubbornly resistant to change. Five decades after the so-called Second Wave of feminism pornography is a primary entertainment industry in this country. Five decades have elapsed and millions of young people in this country did indeed become ad execs and millions more like to watch television ABOUT ad execs and their poor lost tiny souls…

Drawing attention to these upheavals in the arts and in politics is Wounded Galaxies.

Wounded Galaxies: 1968 – Beneath the Paving Stones, the Beach is a festival and symposium produced by The Burroughs Century Ltd., welcoming scholars, writers, artists, archivists, filmmakers, performers, and others interested in exploring the intellectual and aesthetic legacy of 1968, during its 50th Anniversary year. Programs focus on the events that occurred in Paris, Chicago, and Prague of ’68 and examine their relationship to, and resonance with current struggles in the US and around the world.

The festival subtitle is a translation of the French slogan “Sous les pavés, la plage!,” a popular resistance graffiti in France Mai ’68 that refers to both the sand beneath cobblestones lifted by students to hurl at police as well as the ‘Situationist’ conviction that the streets–the expression of capital and consumption–could be rediscovered by abandoning a regimented life.

FEBRUARY 6, 2018—FEBRUARY 11, 2018
1968: Paris, Prague, Chicago

Joan Hawkins is an Associate Professor of Cinema and Media Studies at the IU Media School. She has written extensively on experimental and avant-garde cultures. Her most recent book is Downtown Film and TV Culture 1975-2001 (Intellect Press, 2015). She is a member of The Writers Guild at Bloomington and The Burroughs Century.

Wounded Galaxies 1968: Beneath the Paving Stones, the Beach
1968 Black Market Fire

“Inflated Tear” by Roland Kirk
“Compared to What” by Less McCann & Eddie Harris
“Volunteered Slavery” by Roland Kirk

Producer & Host: Doug Storm
Assistant Producer: Rob Schoon
Studio Engineer: Bryce Martin
Executive Producer: Wes Martin

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