Memoirs of a Revolutionist by Peter Kropotkin

By Peter Kropotkin

Kropotkin's Memoirs is an autobiographical account of his existence as a social progressive. His formal paintings as a zoologist and geographer takes a backseat to his demand radical social reform within the guise of anarchist communism. His adventure-filled lifestyles is palpable in those pages, together with magnificent feats like escaping from criminal on the Peter and Paul castle.

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It wasn’t quite a 4F, but it put me at the end of the queue and freed me to pursue my life without worrying about the growing war in Vietnam. Within six months, so many freaks had shown up for their physicals tripping, claiming to be homosexual, with Dexedrine-fuelled heart rates, or applying for conscientious objector status that the army realized its aversion to ‘bad apples’ would leave them short of cannon fodder. Had it been the autumn rather than the spring of 1964, I would have had my head shaved and been sent straight to boot camp.

I may as well have drunk a few bottles myself for all the acumen I showed when we got to Cambridge. I arranged a spot for them on the live radio broadcast that evening from Club 47 to plug the Sunday night concert. They were so amazing that the local musicians insisted on throwing a party in their honour. Eric Von Schmidt gave them each another bottle of whiskey and we invaded a large house in Newton belonging to a girl whose parents were wintering in Florida. They played for hours, people kept giving them drinks, and eventually they both passed out.

Clark, he claims, had been waiting in the wings at WFIL radio, not out in Reading, and the rape and drunk-driving charges that cost Horn his job were a set-up. WFIL-TV was part of the media empire of Walter Annenberg, later Nixon’s ambassador to London, and Mrs Annenberg evidently hated the kind of music Horn played. The deeply religious station manager was also revolted by Horn and his hipster ways. By the time he was found not guilty of molesting the girl, Horn was a forgotten man in Philadelphia, although not by the many Bandstand ‘regulars’ who wrote to Blitz of how much they loved him and how the show had lost its soul with Clark.

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