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Censorship: Howl & Tropic of Cancer readings 7/8- 7/9/11

Allen Ginsberg, Miami Bookfair International, 1985

Image via Wikipedia


B.J. Spoke Gallery, 299 Main Street Huntington, NY, 631-549-5106. bjspokegallery.com.

B.J. Spoke Gallery in Huntington, Long Island, will be tributing resistance to literary censorship with an exhibition called Censorship, and with readings from works that were brought to trial on charges of obscenity.

The readings are part of its Poets Aloud series. Under the comprehensive title The Archive of Filth, Peter Josyph will be reading from Henry Miller’s classic Tropic of Cancer on Friday, July 8 at 7:30 p.m, and from Allen Ginsberg’s poem Howl on Saturday, July 9 at 8:00 p.m. For the reading of Howl, Josyph will be joined by author-editor Rick Wallach. After the reading of Howl, Josyph and Wallach will lead a discussion of the social, political, and literary significance of both works, and of the importance of the trials in the history of literary expression. The exhibition Censorship runs from June 28 to July 29. July 9: CENSORSHIP reception: 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Says author-actor Peter Josyph: 

This is the perfect place to celebrate the liberation of filth. Whitman was banned in Boston due to some of the later poems in Leaves of Grass. They were thought to be obscene by virtuous New Englanders with too much time on their hands. The B.J. Spoke Gallery is right down the block from where the young Walt Whitman published his newspaper. And I’ve seen Ginsberg reading at the Walt Whitman Birthplace, which is ten minutes from here. I never met Henry Miller, but his work has saved my life many times. I did meet Ginsberg. He was the sweetest guy in the world. While I photographed him for a painting project, we talked about poets and photography. Howl is a masterwork—one of the best poems in the language. At some future date I’d like to read Burroughs, Genet, de Sade, and other gems from the Archive of Filth. And, of course, Whitman. One of my fantasies is to broadcast Whitman live from the window of the gallery on speakers giving out onto the street. Leaves of Grass as you shop and have your ice cream or coffee!

June 28: CENSORSHIP exhibition opens.

July 8: THE ARCHIVE OF FILTH: TROPIC OF CANCER. Reading by Peter Josyph. 7:30 p.m.

July 9: CENSORSHIP reception: 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.

July 9: THE ARCHIVE OF FILTH: HOWL. Reading and discussion by Peter Josyph and Rick Wallach. 8:00 p.m

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