Detroit: Guerilla, 1967. Offset on newsprint. 28pp. 11 ¼ x 15 ½ in. Very good, with a horizontal foldline from folding into halves, chipping at fold of wrappers, an open tear at the right edge (< ½ in.) and the bottom edge (~ ½ in.) of front wrap; some minor wear, chipping, and tearing at edges of most sheets; and, a some wear to the horizontal fold of the last sheet. Item #6788
The second and final issue of the extremely rare radical underground newspaper Guerilla, “a national newspaper of contemporary kulchur,” edited by Allen Van Newkirk and an editorial team at the Detroit Artists’ Workshop Press.
A flagship in revolutionary thought, poetry, and news, the newspaper was published during the summer riots in Detroit in 1967 and the height of the Detroit Free Press literary movement. Situated squarely in the window of political possibility inaugurated by 1960s riots, the newspaper featured a star-studded roster, with Ellen Phelan serving as Art Editor, and a list of contributing editors that included Sun Ra, Diane Di Prima, Michael McClure, Stan Brakhage, John Sinclair, Robert Kelly, Marion Brown, David Meltzer, and Joel Oppenheimer.
This issue features poetry by Di Prima and Robert Kelly, an essay from Gilbert Sorrentino on avant-rock and another from John Sinclair on Jazz and Bebop, alongside a letter on film by Stan Brakhage, and an epistolary poem to George Büchner by Michael McClure. It also features striking cartoons, illustrations, and photography.
While Guerilla billed itself in the first issue as a “monthly” newspaper, this second issue appeared four months late—in the interim the police had assaulted the Guerilla editorial offices, then shared with the Artists’ Workshop Press, and arrested the entire editorial staff. By the time the second issue appeared, some of the staff was still pending trial, and co-editor John Sinclair had resigned over an internal dispute about Guerilla’s attitude towards hippies. The editorial displays ambivalent and critical feelings regarding the middle-class youth movement.
Editor Allen Van Newkirk later made news again. In 2005, Newkirk was arrested and shot following a December 12th armed robbery of a Toys R’ Us near Vancouver, British Columbia. Newkirk had attempted to flee the toy-shop, but crashed into a police-car after a short chase. After crashing he opened fire on the cops; he was shot and killed. Sources say his commitments to surrealism determined the location of the robbery.
An astonishing document of humor, politics and music printed under the banner of surrealism and revolutionary politics.