Reviews in 200 Words

Who’s to Say What’s Obscene? by Paul Krassner

In City Lights Book, Non-Fiction on August 11, 2009 at 3:44 am

Janet Jackson’s bare breast showing for .562 of a second on national TV at the Super Bowl halftime show? Don Imus—in reaction to the mostly black Rutgers University women’s basketball championship win—saying: “That’s some nappy-headed ho’s”? The events of 9/11? Tom Green? Borat? Hummers? Pornography? Disney-character-pornography? Krassner presents irony simply; because “one person’s sense of humor is another person’s entrepreneurial outlook.” Hence O.J. Simpson’s book, If I Did it. Not a joke. Sometimes the irony of reality is enough to be outrageous. Especially in politics. Especially in entertainment; what’s the difference? Krassner is obscene: he suggests all things impolite; but it’s okay, because he’s funny. Krassner presents humor and language and breaks the two down in terms of power. Language is power, proven most obviously by obscenities. Teenagers make obscene phone calls, Elvis danced with obscene gestures and professional football players make obscene amounts of money. Krassner pays homage to Lenny Bruce (among many) who preached, above all, free-speech. Be part of the crass: read the obscenities out loud, let them swirl around your mouth until you have cavities.

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