A Memory of ’68
Written by Bwog Staff
Writer Paul Auster, CC’69, perhaps best known for the postmodern detective novels collected in the New York Trilogy (and subject of a Columbia College Today cover story not too long ago), has a very enjoyable and candid personal essay in today’s NYT about his involvement in the protests of ’68.
“Being crazy,” Auster writes, “struck me as a perfectly sane response to the hand I had been dealt–the hand that all young men had been dealt in 1968. The instant I graduated from college, I would be drafted to fight in a war I despised to the depths of my being, and because I had already made up my mind to refuse to fight in that war, I knew that my future held only two options: prison or exile.”
He describes himself as a “quiet and bookish” young man who discovered his wild side in the protests, which happened exactly 40 years ago today. “I am 61 now, but my thinking has not changed much since that year of fire and blood, and as I sit alone in this room with a pen in my hand, I realize that I am still crazy, perhaps crazier than ever.”
Maybe, if we’re lucky, we’ll see him at the Manhattanville construction site, flinging feces at the gates.
UPDATE: See also the funny nymag.com listicle that anoints Auster the “Brooklyn Literary 1”
Tags: yeah 1968