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Author:  Tony Williams <[log in to unmask]>
Date:    12/19/94 12:37 PM
 
[Editor's note:  This message was submitted to SCREEN-L by the "Author" noted
above, and not by Jeremy Butler ([log in to unmask]).]
 
From: Tony Williams
English
SIUC
 Reply to Gloria Monti re. STRAWBERRY STATEMENT.
  I believe the video is officially out of print but may be found if you search
video stores. Anyway, it is available in John Baky's La Salle University
collection of imaginative representations of the Viet Nam War.
 Tend to agree over your comments about Benjamin and Levi. The former had
no choice. He would have faced a horrendous death. Levi was emotionally
scarred by his experiences which remained with him over the years.
 It is sad when a major figure like Debord or Claire Johnston choose the
final option. But it is often easier to have radical opinions in a fairly
hospitable era rather than face the hostility of less hospitable ones. I
think the feeling during the 60s was that the bad old reactionary decades
(as well as mass unemployment) was a thing of the past and would never
return. But, as those of us seeing the return of the conservative repressed
in the Thatcher and Reagan eras, it did with a vengeance.
  Much as we admire the achievments of these theorists, it is important to
remember that activism often takes place in the minor as well as major areas.
The dedicated activist still selling the Party newspaper on street corners,
those operating in local community politics, the teacher in a classroom telling
students (who often react with astonishment) that there was once an anti- war
movement composed also of Viet Nam veterans - all have equally important roles
to play but are often neglected by the mainstream, As well as regretting the
end of the major figures, let's also not forget that people are also active
in the less highlighted areas of radicalism. They also have a claim to be
regarded as the real heroes, not the phony bourgeois Marxists of the ilk of
Colin McCabe who proclaim in AMERICAN FILM 80s interviews that they were never
Marxists in SCREEN.
 The whole issue does need to be seen in a much wider perspective. Leading
figures may go but many unsung people are still active and have been over
the years.
     Tony Williams