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In Zachary Lazar's 'Sway,' the Rolling Stones, Kenneth Anger and Charles Manson Come Together (OC Weekly)

In Zachary Lazar's 'Sway,' the Rolling Stones, Kenneth Anger and Charles Manson Come Together (OC Weekly)

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Published by MansonCaseFile
The 1960s were all about peace and love, right? Forty years later, we know better; hindsight and all, though it was then well-apparent. The assassinations, the race riots, the Vietnam War, and the authoritarian crackdown on sometimes-violent political and cultural protest all took the shine off the age of Aquarius. The decade's last years were ripe with apocalyptic events: the 1968 Chicago Democratic Convention, the gone-wrong Altamont concert, the Manson murders. Let's face it, Woodstock was an aberration.

For years, the hysterical Right has been blaming a host of social ills on the decade's if-it-feels-good-do-it morality. Demagogues claim that the '60s gave birth to a kind of cultural debasement, crudity and self-absorbed indulgence that continues to this day. Silly them. They still want to blame the hippies. Those traits, categorized collectively as "human," have been with us for thousands of years. They're only pinned on someone when the status quo needs a scapegoat for its repression and institutional violence. Using famous and not-so-much figures from the '60s, Zachary Lazar's fascinating novel Sway examines the decade's ugly side, claiming that evil is biological and cultural. It springs from both nature and nurture. It mostly thrives on indifference. And we're all capable of it.
The 1960s were all about peace and love, right? Forty years later, we know better; hindsight and all, though it was then well-apparent. The assassinations, the race riots, the Vietnam War, and the authoritarian crackdown on sometimes-violent political and cultural protest all took the shine off the age of Aquarius. The decade's last years were ripe with apocalyptic events: the 1968 Chicago Democratic Convention, the gone-wrong Altamont concert, the Manson murders. Let's face it, Woodstock was an aberration.

For years, the hysterical Right has been blaming a host of social ills on the decade's if-it-feels-good-do-it morality. Demagogues claim that the '60s gave birth to a kind of cultural debasement, crudity and self-absorbed indulgence that continues to this day. Silly them. They still want to blame the hippies. Those traits, categorized collectively as "human," have been with us for thousands of years. They're only pinned on someone when the status quo needs a scapegoat for its repression and institutional violence. Using famous and not-so-much figures from the '60s, Zachary Lazar's fascinating novel Sway examines the decade's ugly side, claiming that evil is biological and cultural. It springs from both nature and nurture. It mostly thrives on indifference. And we're all capable of it.

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Published by: MansonCaseFile on Feb 17, 2014
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In Zachary Lazar's 'Sway,' the Rolling Stones, Kenneth Anger and Charles Manson Come Together
By BILL KOHLHAASE Thursday, Apr 10 2008
Sympathy or the !e"ilsThe Stones, ilmma#er Kenneth Anger and Charles Manson come together in
 Sway
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Sway
 e;a-$"es he de!ades u%ly s$de, !la$-$"% ha e#$l $s b$olo%$!al a"d !ulural+ I spr$"%s /ro-
both
 "aure a"d "urure+ I -osly hr$#es o" $"d$//ere"!e+ A"d were all !apable o/ $+Tra!$"% he r$se o/ he oll$"% So"es, he l$/e o/ u"der%rou"d /$l--a(er Ke""eh A"%er, a"d he rela$o"sh$p bewee" s-all*$-e ro!( -us$!$a" Bobby Beausole$l a"d 3harles 5a"so", he boo( reassers a" old lesso" $ole"!e be%es #$ole"!e+
Sway
 e;plo$s a!ual e#e"s o o//er a /$!$o"al a!!ou" o/ a ruly spo$led pro-$se+ La7ar a(es he !olor/ul, $"erse!$"% hreads o/ h$s !hara!ers l$#es a"d wea#es he- $%hly $"o dar( !loh+ As e"era$"$"% as $ $s hou%h/ul,
Sway
 a(es us ba!( o he day, e#e" as $ ou!hes so-eh$"% $-eless+Is "o as $/ we do" see d$saser !o-$"%+ I"deed, ("ow$"% ahead ha he 5a"so" /a-$ly w$ll pa$" walls w$h blood a"d ha Ala-o" w$ll e"d $" %a"% -urder has he e//e! o/ push$"% he pre!ed$"% e#e"s /orward+ La7ar $"rodu!es s-all a!s o/ !ruely<Beausole$ls rea-e" o/ h$s %$rl/r$e"d, he  brawls a he So"es early %$%s, he spa"($"%s A"%er e"dures /ro- h$s /aher<o /oreshadow lar%er a!s o/ !ruely a"d #$ole"!e+ A"%er rea!s o h$s sad$s$! upbr$"%$"% w$h dep$!$o"s o/ de#$l worsh$p a"d a!s o/ -aso!h$s-+ Beausole$l a!s o" u%ly sub!o"s!$ous wh$-s wh$le !o"#$"!$"% h$-sel/ hes res$sa" o he -a"$pula$o"s o/ he -a" hau"$"% h$s hou%hs+ 5$!(, Ke$h a"d he ohers are aloo/, e#e" as Br$a" =o"es drow"s+ 4elus$o" a(es o" a palpable prese"!e+ There are $-es ha La7ar see-s sy-pahe$! o h$s !hara!ers, espe!$ally o A"%er a"d A"$a >alle"ber%, he lo#e $"eres o/ Ke$h a"d Br$a"+ Bu he lar%ely re-a$"s dea!hed /ro- he e#$l ha shadows h$s ale, e;pos$"% $ /ro- a d$sa"!e, "o ?ud%$"% h$s !hara!ers bu le$"% he$r a!$o"s

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