Abbot Howard Hoffman (November 30, 1936 – April 12, 1989) was an American political and social activist, anarchist, and revolutionary who co-founded the Youth International Party ("Yippies").
Hoffman was arrested and tried for conspiracy and inciting to riot as a result of his role in protests that led to violent confrontations with police during the 1968 Democratic National Convention, along with Jerry Rubin, David Dellinger, Tom Hayden, Rennie Davis, John Froines, Lee Weiner, and Bobby Seale. The group was known collectively as the "Chicago Eight"; when Seale's prosecution was separated from the others, they became known as the Chicago Seven. While the defendants were initially convicted of intent to incite a riot, the verdicts were overturned on appeal.
|Born||Abbot Howard Hoffman|
November 30, 1936
Worcester, Massachusetts, U.S.
|Died||April 12, 1989 (aged 52)|
Solebury Township, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Pen name||FREE!, Barry Freed|
|Occupation||Writer, activist, psychologist, speaker, revolutionary|
|Alma mater||Brandeis University and University of California, Berkeley|
|Subject||Political philosophy, social revolution, guerrilla theater, Civil Rights Movement, gift economics|
|Literary movement||Yippie, 1960s counterculture|
|Notable works||Revolution for the Hell of It, Woodstock Nation, Steal This Book|
(m. 1960; div. 1966)
(m. 1967; div. 1980)
Hoffman was born November 30, 1936 in Worcester, Massachusetts, to John Hoffman and Florence Schanberg. Hoffman was raised in a middle-class Jewish household and had two younger siblings. As a child in the 1940s and 1950s, he was a member of what has been described as "the transitional generation between the beatniks and hippies". He described his childhood as "idyllic" and the 1940s as "a great time to grow up in."
During his school days, he became known as a troublemaker who started fights, played pranks, vandalized school property, and referred to teachers by their first names. In his sophomore year, Hoffman was expelled from Classical High School, a now-closed public high school in Worcester. As an atheist, Hoffman wrote a paper declaring that, "God could not possibly exist, for if he did, there wouldn't be any suffering in the world." The irate teacher ripped up the paper and called him "a Communist punk". Hoffman jumped on the teacher and started fighting him until he was restrained and removed from the school. On June 3, 1954, 17-year-old Hoffman was arrested for the first time, for driving without a license. After his expulsion, he attended Worcester Academy, graduating in 1955. Hoffman engaged in many behaviors typical of rebellious teenagers in the 1950s, such as riding motorcycles, wearing leather jackets, and sporting a ducktail haircut.
Upon graduating, he enrolled in Brandeis University, where he studied under professors such as noted psychologist Abraham Maslow, often considered the father of humanistic psychology. He was also a student of Marxist theorist Herbert Marcuse, who Hoffman said had a profound effect on his political outlook. Hoffman would later cite Marcuse's influence during his activism and his theories on revolution. He was on the Brandeis tennis team, which was coached by journalist Bud Collins. Hoffman graduated with a B.A. in psychology in 1959. That fall, he enrolled at the University of California, Berkeley, where he completed coursework toward a master's degree in psychology. Soon after, he married his pregnant girlfriend Sheila Karklin in May 1960.
Before his days as a leading member of the Yippie movement, Hoffman was involved with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), and organized Liberty House, which sold items to support the civil rights movement in the southern United States. During the Vietnam War, Hoffman was an anti-war activist, using deliberately comical and theatrical tactics.
In late 1966, Hoffman met with a radical community-action group called the Diggers and studied their ideology. He later returned to New York and published a book with this knowledge. Doing so was considered a violation by the Diggers. Diggers co-founder Peter Coyote explained:
Abbie, who was a friend of mine, was always a media junky. We explained everything to those guys, and they violated everything we taught them. Abbie went back, and the first thing he did was publish a book, with his picture on it, that blew the hustle of every poor person on the Lower East Side by describing every free scam then current in New York, which were then sucked dry by disaffected kids from Scarsdale.
One of Hoffman's well-known stunts was on August 24, 1967, when he led members of the movement to the gallery of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The protesters threw fistfuls of real and fake dollar bills down to the traders below, some of whom booed, while others began to scramble frantically to grab the money as fast as they could. Accounts of the amount of money that Hoffman and the group tossed was said to be as little as $30 to $300. Hoffman claimed to be pointing out that, metaphorically, that's what NYSE traders "were already doing." "We didn't call the press," wrote Hoffman. "At that time we really had no notion of anything called a media event." Yet the press was quick to react and by evening the event was reported around the world. After that incident, the stock exchange spent $20,000 to enclose the gallery with bulletproof glass.
In October 1967, David Dellinger of the National Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam asked Jerry Rubin to help mobilize and direct a march on the Pentagon. The protesters gathered at the Lincoln Memorial as Dellinger and Dr. Benjamin Spock gave speeches to the mass of people. From there, the group marched towards the Pentagon. As the protesters neared the Pentagon, they were met by soldiers of the 82nd Airborne Division who formed a human barricade blocking the Pentagon steps. Not to be dissuaded, Hoffman vowed to levitate the Pentagon claiming he would attempt to use psychic energy to levitate the Pentagon until it would turn orange and begin to vibrate, at which time the war in Vietnam would end. Allen Ginsberg led Tibetan chants to assist Hoffman.
Hoffman's theatrical performances succeeded in convincing many young people at the time to become more politically active.
Hoffman was arrested and tried for conspiracy and inciting to riot as a result of his role in anti-Vietnam War protests, which were met by a violent police riot during the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago. He was among the group that came to be known as the Chicago Seven (originally known as the Chicago Eight), which included fellow Yippie Jerry Rubin, David Dellinger, Rennie Davis, John Froines, Lee Weiner, future California state senator Tom Hayden and Black Panther Party co-founder Bobby Seale (before his trial was severed from the others).
Presided over by Judge Julius Hoffman (no relation to Hoffman, about which he joked throughout the trial), Abbie Hoffman's courtroom antics frequently grabbed the headlines; one day, defendants Hoffman and Rubin appeared in court dressed in judicial robes, while on another day, Hoffman was sworn in as a witness with his hand giving the finger. Judge Hoffman became the favorite courtroom target of the Chicago Seven defendants, who frequently would insult the judge to his face. Abbie Hoffman told Judge Hoffman "you are a 'shande fur de Goyim' [disgrace in front of the gentiles]. You would have served Hitler better." He later added that "your idea of justice is the only obscenity in the room." Both Davis and Rubin told the Judge "this court is bullshit." When Hoffman was asked in what state he resided, he replied the "state of mind of my brothers and sisters".
Other celebrities were called as "cultural witnesses" including Allen Ginsberg, Phil Ochs, Arlo Guthrie, Norman Mailer and others. Hoffman closed the trial with a speech in which he quoted Abraham Lincoln, making the claim that the president himself, if alive today, would also be arrested in Chicago's Lincoln Park.
On February 18, 1970, Hoffman and four of the other defendants (Rubin, Dellinger, Davis, and Hayden) were found guilty of intent to incite a riot while crossing state lines. All seven defendants were found not guilty of conspiracy. At sentencing, Hoffman suggested the judge try LSD and offered to set him up with "a dealer he knew in Florida" (the judge was known to be headed to Florida for a post-trial vacation). Each of the five was sentenced to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
At Woodstock in 1969, Hoffman reportedly interrupted The Who's performance to attempt to speak against the jailing of John Sinclair of the White Panther Party. He grabbed a microphone and yelled, "I think this is a pile of shit while John Sinclair rots in prison ..." Pete Townshend was adjusting his amplifier between songs and turned to look at Hoffman over his left shoulder. Townshend shouted "Fuck off! Fuck off my fucking stage!" and reportedly ran at Hoffman with his guitar and hit Hoffman in the back, although Townshend later denied attacking Hoffman. Townshend later said that while he actually agreed with Hoffman on Sinclair's imprisonment, he would have knocked him offstage regardless of the content of his message, given that Hoffman had violated the "sanctity of the stage," i.e., the right of the band to perform uninterrupted by distractions not relevant to the show. The incident took place during a camera change, and was not captured on film. The audio of this incident, however, can be heard on The Who's box set, Thirty Years of Maximum R&B (Disc 2, Track 20, "Abbie Hoffman Incident").
In 1971's Steal This Book in the section "Free Communication," Hoffman encourages his readership to take to the stage at rock concerts to use the pre-assembled audience and PA system to get their message out. However, he mentions that "interrupting the concert is frowned upon since it is only spitting in the faces of people you are trying to reach."
In Woodstock Nation, Hoffman mentions the incident and says he was on a bad LSD trip at the time. Joe Shea, then a reporter for the Times Herald-Record, newspaper that covered the event on-site, said he saw the incident. He recalled that Hoffman was actually hit in the back of the head by Townshend's guitar and toppled directly into the pit in front of the stage. He does not recall any "shove" from Townshend, and discounts both men's accounts.
In 1971, Hoffman published Steal This Book, which advised readers on how to live basically for free. Many of his readers followed Hoffman's advice and stole the book, leading many bookstores to refuse to carry it. He was also the author of several other books, including Vote!, co-written with Rubin and Ed Sanders. Hoffman was arrested August 28, 1973, on drug charges for intent to sell and distribute cocaine. He always maintained that undercover police agents entrapped him into a drug deal and planted suitcases of cocaine in his office. In the spring of 1974, Hoffman skipped bail, underwent cosmetic surgery to alter his appearance, and hid from authorities, sometimes dressed as an Orthodox Jew, for several years, abandoning his family in the process.
Some believed Hoffman made himself a target. In 1998, Peter Coyote opined:
The FBI couldn't infiltrate us. We did everything anonymously, and we did everything for nothing because we wanted our actions to be authentic. It's the mistake that Abbie Hoffman made. He came out, he studied with us, we taught him everything, and then he went back and wrote a book called Free, and he put his name on it! He set himself up to be a leader of the counterculture, and he was undone by that. Big mistake.
Despite being "in hiding" during part of this period (Hoffman lived in Fineview, New York, near Thousand Island Park, a private resort on Wellesley Island on the St. Lawrence River under the name "Barry Freed"), he helped coordinate an environmental campaign to preserve the Saint Lawrence River (Save the River organization). During his time on the run, he was also the "travel" columnist for Crawdaddy! magazine. On September 4, 1980, he surrendered to authorities, and, on the same date, he appeared on a pre-taped edition of ABC-TV's 20/20 in an interview with Barbara Walters. Hoffman received a one-year sentence, but was released after four months.
In November 1986, Hoffman was arrested along with 14 others, including Amy Carter, the daughter of former President Jimmy Carter, for trespassing at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The charges stemmed from a protest against the Central Intelligence Agency's recruitment on the UMass campus. Since the university's policy limited campus recruitment to law-abiding organizations, the defense argued that the CIA engaged in illegal activities. The federal district court judge permitted expert witnesses, including former Attorney General Ramsey Clark and a former CIA agent who testified that the CIA carried on an illegal Contra war against the Sandinista regime in Nicaragua in violation of the Boland Amendment.
In three days of testimony, more than a dozen defense witnesses, including Daniel Ellsberg, and former Contra leader Edgar Chamorro, described the CIA's role in more than two decades of covert, illegal and often violent activities. In his closing argument, Hoffman, acting as his own attorney, placed his actions within the best tradition of American civil disobedience. He quoted from Thomas Paine, "the most outspoken and farsighted of the leaders of the American Revolution: 'Every age and generation must be as free to act for itself, in all cases, as the ages and generations which preceded it. Man has no property in man, neither has any generation a property in the generations which are to follow.'"
Hoffman concluded: "Thomas Paine was talking about this Spring day in this courtroom. A verdict of not guilty will say, 'When our country is right, keep it right; but when it is wrong, right those wrongs.'" On April 15, 1987, the jury found Hoffman and the other defendants not guilty.
After his acquittal, Hoffman acted in a cameo appearance in Oliver Stone's later-released anti-Vietnam War movie, Born on the Fourth of July. He essentially played himself in the movie, waving a flag on the ramparts of an administration building during a campus protest that was being teargassed and crushed by state troopers.
In 1987 Hoffman summed up his views.
You are talking to a leftist. I believe in the redistribution of wealth and power in the world. I believe in universal hospital care for everyone. I believe that we should not have a single homeless person in the richest country in the world. And I believe that we should not have a CIA that goes around overwhelming governments and assassinating political leaders, working for tight oligarchies around the world to protect the tight oligarchy here at home.
Later that same year, Hoffman and Jonathan Silvers wrote Steal This Urine Test (published October 5, 1987), which exposed the internal contradictions of the War on Drugs and suggested ways to circumvent its most intrusive measures. He stated, for instance, that Federal Express, which received high praise from management guru Tom Peters for "empowering" workers, in fact subjected most employees to random drug tests, firing any who got a positive result, with no retest or appeal procedure, despite the fact that FedEx chose a drug lab (the lowest bidder) with a proven record of frequent false-positive results.
Stone's Born on the Fourth of July was released on December 20, 1989, more than eight months after Hoffman's suicide on April 12, 1989. At the time of his death, Hoffman was at the height of a renewed public visibility, one of the few 1960s radicals who still commanded the attention of all kinds of mass media. He regularly lectured audiences about the CIA's covert activities, including assassinations disguised as suicides. His Playboy article (October 1988) outlining the connections that constitute the "October Surprise", brought that alleged conspiracy to the attention of a wide-ranging American readership for the first time.
In 1960, Hoffman married Sheila Karklin and had two children: Andrew (born 1960) and Amy (1962–2007), who later went by the name Ilya. They divorced in 1966.
In 1967, Hoffman married Anita Kushner in Manhattan's Central Park. They had one son, america Hoffman, deliberately named using a lowercase "a" to indicate both patriotism and non-jingoistic intent. Although Hoffman and Kushner were effectively separated after Hoffman became a fugitive, starting in 1973, they were not formally divorced until 1980. He subsequently fell in love with Johanna Lawrenson in 1974, while a fugitive.
Hoffman was 52 at the time of his death on April 12, 1989, which was caused by swallowing 150 phenobarbital tablets and liquor. He had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1980. At the time he had recently changed treatment medications and was reportedly depressed when his 83-year-old mother was diagnosed with cancer (she died in 1996 at the age of 90). Some close to Hoffman, including his longtime friend David Denton and fellow Chicago Seven co-defendant Tom Hayden, claimed that as a natural prankster who valued youth, he was also unhappy about reaching middle age, combined with the fact that the ideas of the 1960s had given way to a conservative backlash in the 1980s. In 1984 he had expressed dismay that the current generation of young people was not as interested in protesting and social activism as the youth had been during the 1960s. Hoffman's body was found in his apartment in a converted turkey coop on Sugan Road in Solebury Township, near New Hope, Pennsylvania. At the time of his death, he was surrounded by about 200 pages of his handwritten notes, many about his moods.
His death was officially ruled as suicide. As reported by The New York Times, "Among the more vocal doubters at the service today was Mr. Dellinger, who said, 'I don't believe for one moment the suicide thing.' He said he had been in fairly frequent touch with Mr. Hoffman, who had 'numerous plans for the future.'" Yet the same New York Times article reported that the coroner found the residue of about 150 pills and quoted the coroner in a telephone interview saying "There is no way to take that amount of phenobarbital without intent. It was intentional and self-inflicted."
A week after Hoffman's death, 1,000 friends and relatives gathered for a memorial in Worcester, Massachusetts, at Temple Emanuel, the synagogue he attended as a child. Two of his colleagues from the Chicago Seven conspiracy trial were there: David Dellinger and Jerry Rubin, Hoffman's co-founder of the Yippies, by then a businessman.
As The New York Times reported: "Indeed, most of the mourners who attended the formal memorial at Temple Emanuel here were more yuppie than yippie and there were more rep ties than ripped jeans among the crowd..."
The Times report continued:
Bill Walton, the radical Celtic of basketball renown, told of a puckish Abbie, then underground evading a cocaine charge in the '70s, leaping from the shadows on a New York street to give him an impromptu basketball lesson after a loss to the Knicks. 'Abbie was not a fugitive from justice,' said Mr Walton. 'Justice was a fugitive from him.' On a more traditional note, Rabbi Norman Mendell said in his eulogy that Mr. Hoffman's long history of protest, antic though much of it had been, was 'in the Jewish prophetic tradition, which is to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.'
Hoffman is featured in interviews and archival news footage in the following documentaries:
According to Abbie, the teacher took issue with his defense of atheism.
Anita Hoffman (March 16, 1942 – December 27, 1998), born Anita Kushner, and was a Yippie activist, writer, prankster, and the wife of Abbie Hoffman.
Hoffman helped her husband plan some of the most memorable pranks of the Yippie movement. She is also remembered for supporting Abbie Hoffman during his life underground while she raised their son, america Hoffman.
Hoffman edited a book published in 1976 of letters she and Abbie had written to each other from April 1974 through early March 1975 while Abbie was "underground" to avoid a prison sentence for allegedly selling cocaine, To America with Love: Letters From the Underground. She authored the novel, Trashing, which she wrote under the pseudonym Ann Fettamen.
She died of breast cancer on December 27, 1998, aged 56.
Her life was dramatized in the 2000 film Steal This Movie, in which she was portrayed by Janeane Garofalo.Bill Morgan (archivist)
Bill Morgan is an American writer, editor and painter, best known for his work as an archivist and bibliographer for public figures such as Allen Ginsberg, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Abbie Hoffman, and Timothy Leary.Chicago 10 (film)
Chicago 10: Speak Your Peace is a 2007 American animated documentary written and directed by Brett Morgen that tells the story of the Chicago Eight. The film features the voices of Hank Azaria, Dylan Baker, Nick Nolte, Mark Ruffalo, Roy Scheider, Liev Schreiber, James Urbaniak, and Jeffrey Wright in an animated reenactment of the trial based on transcripts and rediscovered audio recordings. It also contains archival footage of Abbie Hoffman, David Dellinger, William Kunstler, Jerry Rubin, Bobby Seale, Tom Hayden, and Leonard Weinglass, and of the protest and riot itself. The title is drawn from a quote by Rubin, who said, "Anyone who calls us the Chicago Seven is a racist. Because you're discrediting Bobby Seale. You can call us the Chicago Eight, but really we're the Chicago Ten, because our two lawyers went down with us."Chicago Seven
The Chicago Seven (originally Chicago Eight, also Conspiracy Eight/Conspiracy Seven) were seven defendants—Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, David Dellinger, Tom Hayden, Rennie Davis, John Froines, and Lee Weiner—charged by the federal government with conspiracy, inciting to riot, and other charges related to anti-Vietnam War and countercultural protests that took place in Chicago, Illinois, on the occasion of the 1968 Democratic National Convention. Bobby Seale, the eighth man charged, had his trial severed during the proceedings, lowering the number of defendants from eight to seven.
Seale was eventually sentenced to four years in prison for contempt of court, although this ruling was later reversed.
After a federal trial resulting in both acquittals and convictions, followed by appeals, and reversals, some of the seven defendants were finally convicted, although all of the convictions were ultimately overturned.Four Walls Eight Windows
Four Walls Eight Windows was an independent book publisher in New York City. Known as 4W8W or Four Walls, the company was notable for its dual commitment to progressive politics and adventurous, edgy literary fiction.
Among the more significant contemporary authors published by Four Walls were Steve Aylett, Ed Ayres, Michael Brodsky, Octavia Butler, Jerome Charyn, Andrei Codrescu, Richard Condon, Sue Coe, R. Crumb, Paul Di Filippo, Cory Doctorow, Andrea Dworkin, Brian Evenson, Annie Ernaux, Allen Ginsberg, Abbie Hoffman, Margo Howard-Howard, Kathe Koja, Gordon Lish, Gary Lutz, Jim Munroe, Harvey Pekar, Tito Perdue, Rudy Rucker, John Ralston Saul, Lucius Shepard, Sasha Sokolov and Edward D. Wood, Jr. It also had a line of "modern classics," which included authors such as Nelson Algren, Sherwood Anderson, George Plimpton and Sloan Wilson.It Was Twenty Years Ago Today (film)
It Was Twenty Years Ago Today (also known as Sgt. Pepper: It Was Twenty Years Ago Today) is a 1987 British-made television documentary film about the 1967 Summer of Love. It first aired on 1 June 1987, twenty years after the official release date of the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album. The documentary takes the Beatles album as the central factor behind the events and scenes that led to the full emergence of the 1960s counterculture in 1967. It was directed by John Sheppard for Granada Television. In addition to archive footage, it features interviews with key figures from the period, including Derek Taylor, who also served as consultant on the production, George Harrison, Paul McCartney, Allen Ginsberg, Abbie Hoffman and Timothy Leary. The documentary was accompanied by the book It Was Twenty Years Ago Today, written by Taylor. After its initial broadcast on the ITV network in the UK, the documentary was shown by PBS in the US on 11 November.Jonah Raskin
Jonah Raskin (born January 3, 1942) is an American writer who left an East Coast university teaching position to participate in the 1970s radical counterculture as a freelance journalist, then returned to the academy in California in the 1980s to write probing studies of Abbie Hoffman and Allen Ginsberg and reviews of northern California writers whom he styled as "natives, newcomers, exiles and fugitives." Beginning as a lecturer in English at Sonoma State University in 1981, he moved to chair of the Communications Studies Department from 1988 to 2007, while serving as a book reviewer for the San Francisco Chronicle and the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat. He retired from his teaching position in 2011.Paul Lieber
Paul Lieber is an American stage, television, and film actor. He is best known for playing Eric Dorsey in the television series Barney Miller in 1980.He also appeared in other television series including:
Hill Street Blues
Who's the Boss?
Cagney & Lacey
Barney Miller (1980 TV series) (as Sgt. Dorsey)
Saturday Night with Connie Chung (as Abbie Hoffman)
Tales from the Crypt
Murder, She Wrote
Law & Order
Curb Your Enthusiasm
NYPD BluePigasus (politics)
Pigasus was a 145-pound (66-kg) domestic pig who was nominated for President of the United States as a theatrical gesture by the Youth International Party on August 23, 1968, just before the opening of the Democratic National Convention in Chicago, Illinois. The youth-oriented party (whose members were commonly called "Yippies") was an anti-establishment and countercultural revolutionary group whose views were inspired by the free speech and anti-war movements of the 1960s, mainly the opposition to United States involvement in the Vietnam War.
Yippies were known for using dramatic theatrics in their demonstrations, and they used Pigasus as a way to mock the social status quo. At a rally announcing his candidacy, Pigasus was seized by Chicago policemen and several of his Yippie backers were arrested for disorderly conduct.Steal This
Steal This is an EP by The Explosion. It was released in 2000 on Revelation Records. Its title is a sarcastic jab at the legal troubles resulting in the EP's recording.The Explosion's bassist, Damian Genuardi, had played in straight edge hardcore band In My Eyes before founding The Explosion in 1998. In My Eyes were signed to Revelation. When Revelation found out about The Explosion's success on Jade Tree Records, they threatened to sue Genaurdi if he was credited on any of The Explosion's records. They believed that The Explosion's success with Jade Tree should belong to them. The Explosion settled the dispute by writing this EP while on the road. As a result of its circumstances, it is not considered The Explosion's best work.
A book called Steal This Book was written by Abbie Hoffman in 1871.Steal This Book
Steal This Book is a book written by Abbie Hoffman. Written in 1970 and published in 1971, the book exemplified the counterculture of the sixties. The book sold more than a quarter of a million copies between April and November 1971.The book is, in the style of the counterculture, mainly focused on ways to fight the government, and against corporations in any way possible. The book is written in the form of a guide to the youth. Hoffman, a political and social activist himself, used many of his own activities as the inspiration for some of his advice in Steal This Book.Steal This Movie!
Steal This Movie! is a 2000 American biographical film directed by Robert Greenwald and written by Bruce Graham, based on a number of books, including To America with Love: Letters From the Underground by Anita and Abbie Hoffman and Abbie Hoffman: American Rebel by Marty Jezer. The film follows 1960s radical figure Abbie Hoffman, and stars Vincent D'Onofrio and Janeane Garofalo, with Jeanne Tripplehorn and Kevin Pollak.
The film follows Hoffman's (D'Onofrio) relationship with his second wife Anita (Garofalo) and their "awakening" and subsequent conversion to an activist life. The title of the film is a play on Hoffman's 1970 counter-culture guidebook titled Steal This Book.To America with Love
To America with Love: Letters from the Underground is a 1976 book by Anita and Abbie Hoffman. It was part of the basis for the film Steal This Movie! in 2000.Tom Foran
Thomas Aquinas Foran (? - August 6, 2000), was a US Attorney best known as the pugnacious chief prosecutor in the Chicago Seven conspiracy trial in which seven defendants, including Jerry Rubin, Abbie Hoffman, and Tom Hayden, were charged with inciting riots at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. Foran also prosecuted several police officers caught on film beating the protestors with clubs.
In the animated film Chicago 10, his voice was provided by Nick Nolte.
Mr. Foran was a senior partner in Foran & Schultz, the firm he founded in 1957. His name was one of the brightest in his city's legal profession, but to the outside world it was inextricably linked to some leading characters of a turbulent era.
There were Abbie Hoffman, Bobby Seale, and Jerry Rubin, who took their Vietnam War protests to the streets. There was William M. Kunstler, the raspy-voiced defender of unpopular people and causes.
There was Judge Julius J. Hoffman, an equally combative presence on the bench of Federal District Court. And there was Mr. Foran, the United States attorney and doggedly determined prosecutor.
The seven defendants at the four-and-a-half-month trial stood accused of inciting the riots that swirled around the Democratic National Convention in 1968.
Mr. Foran and his prosecuting team obtained convictions against five of them—David Dellinger, Tom Hayden, Mr. Rubin, Mr. Hoffman and Mr. Davis—for the lesser charge of crossing state lines with intent to incite a riot; two defendants were acquitted, Lee Weiner and John R. Froines.
Judge Hoffman imposed prison sentences on the five, as well as on Mr. Kunstler, whom he held in contempt. None of them served any time in prison because an appeals court threw out the convictions and rebuked Judge Hoffman for unseemly conduct in court and procedural errors.
Thomas Foran was born in Chicago. He interrupted his college education to serve as a torpedo bomber pilot in the Pacific in World War II. After the war, he graduated with a bachelor's degree in philosophy from Loyola University and received his law degree at the University of Detroit in 1950.
In private practice, he established a solid reputation as an expert in eminent domain law, representing the City of Chicago in major public works projects. But he also acted as counsel for property owners.
As a United States attorney, from 1968 to 1970, he established a remarkable conviction record in the fight against organized crime, successfully prosecuting more than 150 people.
Mr. Foran is survived by his wife of nearly 50 years, Jean Burke Foran; three sons, John, Edmund and Stephen; three daughters, Elizabeth, Julie, and Regina; a brother, Dr. John Foran; a sister, Grace Szalinski; and 16 grandchildren.
He died in Lake Forest, Illinois, on August 6, 2000, surrounded by his family.Woodstock Nation
The term Woodstock Nation refers specifically to the attendees of the original 1969 Woodstock Music and Arts Festival that took place from August 15–17 on the farm of Max Yasgur near Bethel, New York. It comes from the title of a book written later that year by Yippie activist Abbie Hoffman, describing his experiences at the festival.
More generally, however, the term is used as a catch-all phrase for those individuals of the baby boomer generation in the United States who subscribed to the values of the American counterculture of the 1960s and early 1970s. The term is often interchangeable with hippie, although the latter term is sometimes used as an oath of derision.
The characteristic traits of members of the Woodstock Nation include, but are not limited to, concern for the environment, embracing of left-wing political causes and issues allied to a strong sense of political activism, eschewing of traditional gender roles, vegetarianism, and enthusiasm for the music of the period.
The Woodstock Nation also counts as members individuals from later generational cohorts, as the underground cultural values and attitudes of 1960s bohemian communities such as Haight-Ashbury and Laurel Canyon have seeped ever more into the mainstream with the passage of time.Woodstock Nation (book)
Woodstock Nation: A Talk-Rock Album is a book written by Abbie Hoffman in 1969 that describes his experiences at that year's Woodstock Music and Arts Festival. The book was written as Hoffman was awaiting trial as one of the Chicago Eight for conspiring to incite riots at the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.
Mostly written in a stream of consciousness style made popular by such works as Ulysses by James Joyce and On the Road by Jack Kerouac, Woodstock Nation focuses on youth culture, including Hoffman's views of rock music and politics. One target of Hoffman's criticism is Pete Townshend of The Who, with whom Hoffman tussled onstage at the Festival.Youth International Party
The Youth International Party, whose members were commonly called Yippies, was an American radically youth-oriented and countercultural revolutionary offshoot of the free speech and anti-war movements of the 1960s. It was founded on December 31, 1967. They employed theatrical gestures, such as advancing a pig ("Pigasus the Immortal") as a candidate for President in 1968, to mock the social status quo. They have been described as a highly theatrical, anti-authoritarian and anarchist youth movement of "symbolic politics".Since they were well known for street theater and politically themed pranks, they were either ignored or denounced by many of the "old school" political left. According to ABC News, "The group was known for street theater pranks and was once referred to as the 'Groucho Marxists'."