In Chicago, Allen Ginsberg declared that the 35th National Democratic Convention was a mass hallucination. Maybe he is right, and the whole thing never happened. His account should be interesting; Jean Genet’s more so; and Norman Mailer will have much to say. (One observer remarked that when Norman strode among the young it was as if Jesus Christ had materialized in the Vatican.) No image, however cockeyed, surreal, and extravagant is inappropriate.— or equal—to the occasion. I confess that the events are too much for me. It would take an inspired Artaud to do them justice. For what we who were on the spot saw, smelled, and felt for nearly five wretched days was authentic Theater of Cruelty, a superproduction compared to which Marat/Sale is kids’ stuff. Whether the principle performance took place inside or outside the International Amphitheater, that stockyard converted into a stockade, is debatable.
Babbling, shouting, milling, and churning were omnipresent....
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