In the 1950s, amid prosperity and a booming economy, Allen Ginsberg defied conventions and the mainstream by openly standing forward as a homosexual, a socialist and a sharp critic of the capitalist American society he lived in. For this he was persecuted in a famous obscenity trial, which he ended up winning. This is portrayed in the feature film Howl from 2010, now available here on DVD.
Perhaps nothing elicits more disagreement and debate among Marxists and other left activists than a discussion about the media. There is no doubt that the mass media is omnipresent, mediating every aspect of our lives. How one relates to and interprets the world is largely colored by how the media informs us. On the eve of the release of the Leveson report, we publish this Marxist analysis of the media from a correspondent in the USA.