Ravens in the Storm: A Personal History of the 1960s Anti-War Movement

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His father was from South Carolina , and his mother was from Alabama. They met in Akron, Ohio , where the elder Oglesby worked in the rubber mills. After a year in New York, he returned to Akron, where he became a copywriter for Goodyear and continued working on his creative endeavors, including three plays influenced by Britain's " angry young men " literary movement exemplified by "a well-received work on the Hatfield-McCoy feud " [1] and an unfinished novel.

In , Oglesby and his family moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan , where he took a technical writing position with the Bendix Corporation , a defense contractor.

Ravens in the Storm: A Personal History of the s Antiwar Movement

He ascended to the directorship of the company's technical writing division before completing his undergraduate degree as a part-time student at the University of Michigan where he cultivated a circle of friends that included Donald Hall and Frithjof Bergmann in He wrote a critical article on American foreign policy in the Far East in the University of Michigan's campus magazine. As Oglebsy put it, "We talked.


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I got to thinking about things. As a writer, I needed a mode of action [ He co-authored with Richard Shaull the book, Containment and Change which argued for an alliance between the New Left and the libertarian , non-interventionist Old Right in opposing an imperialist U. He became so impressed by the spirit and intellectual strength of the SDS that he became deeply involved in the organization.

Despite the notable age gap between Oglesby and the traditionally-aged undergraduates who comprised most of the organization's membership, he became its president within a year. His first project was to be a " grass-roots theatre", but that project was soon superseded by the opposition to escalating American activity in Vietnam ; he helped organize a teach-in in Michigan, and to build for the large SDS peace march in Washington on April 17, On November 27, , Oglesby gave a speech, "Let Us Shape the Future," before tens of thousands of anti-war demonstrators in Washington.

He compared the Vietnam revolution to the American revolution. He condemned corporate liberalism and accused corporate anti-Communists of self-righteously denouncing Communist tyranny, while ignoring the "right-wing tyrannies that our businessmen traffic with and our nation profits from every day.

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According to Kirkpatrick Sale : "It was a devastating performance: skilled, moderate, learned, and compassionate, but uncompromising, angry, radical, and above all persuasive. It drew the only standing ovation of the afternoon Oglesby's political outlook was more eclectic than that of many in SDS. He was heavily influenced by libertarian economist Murray Rothbard , and dismissed socialism as "a way to bury social problems under a federal bureaucracy.

Anti War Movement

In his essay "Vietnamese Crucible," published in the volume Containment and Change , Oglesby rejected the "socialist radical, the corporatist conservative, and the welfare-state liberal" and challenged the New Left to embrace "American democratic populism" and "the American libertarian right. Invoking Senator Taft , Gen.

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In , he signed the " Writers and Editors War Tax Protest " pledge, vowing to refuse tax payments in protest against the Vietnam War. Oglesby was forced out of SDS in , after more left-wing members accused him of "being 'trapped in our early, bourgeois stage' and for not progressing into 'a Marxist-Leninist perspective.


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  • His self-titled album was released by Vanguard Records and later reviewed by Village Voice critic Robert Christgau , who wrote in Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies : "In which the first president of SDS takes after Leonard Cohen , offering a clue as to why the framers of the Port Huron Statement didn't change the world in quite the way they envisioned. All items subject to prior sale.

    Ravens in the Storm: A Personal History of the 1960s Anti-War Movement

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    About this Item Fine. Cloth, D-j. About this title Synopsis: Features a first-person account of the organization Students for a Democratic Society, and describes the author's travels to Vietnam, his work on student volunteer initiatives, and his participation in the Chicago Seven trial. Kerry "About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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