Marc Gellman on the acid culture of the 1960s, Part 1
Age of Aquarius: 2002
Marc Gellman, Professor of Psychology, describes the acid culture of the 1960s. Chemists looked for a way that the US government could use LSD, but after finding none, it was declared an "illegal substance." He talks about Dr. Timothy Leary's experiments with hallucinogenic mushrooms and his testing drugs on himself and his graduate students, leading to his dismissal from his position as professor of psychology at Harvard. Leary went on to become a leading proponent for the use of psychedelic drugs to expand the mind and alter perceptions. Also discussed is Ken Kesey, who had first come across LSD when, as a graduate student at Stanford, he wanted to earn some extra money on the side. He volunteered at Menlo Park VA Hospital in a government-sponsored program, participating in experiments conducted to study the effects of hallucinogenics. He and his friends formed a group called the Merry Pranksters, who promoted LSD. Their slogan was "Furthur" (further + future). The Merry Pranksters drove around California, then the country, and threw parties at which everyone consumed marijuana and LSD (the Kool-Aid was spiked with LSD, hence Tom Wolfe's title "The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test"). The Grateful Dead were the house group at Kesey's parties. The counterculture hipsters talked extensively about cultural revolution and wore funky, tie-dyed clothes. He discusses Jefferson Airplane and Grace Slick’s song "White Rabbit." Gellman recalls that he knew Bruce Springsteen when growing up in New Jersey; and reminisces about getting friends together and attending Woodstock.
Time: 20 min
Marc Gellman on the acid culture of the 1960s, Part 2
Age of Aquarius: 2002
Marc Gellman, Professor of Psychology, describes the acid culture of the 1960s. They realized it was going to be no mere concert. There were fans of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, others who were propounding political ideas, and one attendee who had brought a huge amount of marijuana to give away.
Time: min
William Rothman on film and music of the 1960s
Age of Aquarius: 2002
Bill Rothman, Professor in the School of Communications, discusses film, art and music in the 1960s. He admits that usually when we think of the 1960s, we think more of music than of films. Film-making is expensive, so most pictures of the 1950s and 1960s were produced by Hollywood studios, and few were counter-cultural. African Americans were mostly excluded from the film industry, with a few exceptions such as Poitier. The corporate establishment made movies that did not always provide what teenagers really wanted to see. In the 1950s, television was dominant and McCarthyism affected film-making. Science fiction films might argue that aliens could be welcomed, but were as likely to dramatize that strangers were dangerous. 1960 was a watershed year as the French New Wave appeared with such movies as Godard's "Breathless" ("A bout de souffle"), movies that showcased sex and violence that 1950s American films did not show. He discusses other sociological aspects of the cinema-going experience. For instance, an audience member is supposed to be silent during a movie, unlike dancing at a concert. Eventually, college students began to demand that film studies be introduced into curricula.
Time: 43 min

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