A Howl for Literary Freedom

by Dick Meister 

It was 50 years ago this summer that Americans finally won the unfettered right to read whatever they wanted to read, a half-century since poet Allen Ginsberg’s “Howl” went on trial in a San Francisco courtroom. 

Like many works before it, “Howl” had been declared “obscene” by law enforcement authorities who banned its sale. But this time it led to the summer-long trial that cleared “Howl” and virtually ended government book-banning.

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