The Harrisburg 7 and the New Catholic Left by William O'Rourke
New York : Thomas Y. Crowell Company, 1972. First Edition with full numbers line. Hardcover. 264 pages ; 22 cm. $6.95 dust jacket with minimal wear. Pages are clean and unmarked. Binding is firm.
The Harrisburg 7 and the New Catholic Left
by William O'Rourke
No trial in American history has been recorded with the unique novelistic perspective that O'Rourke brings to the trial of the Harrisburg 7. As a member of the working press, with access to the lawyers and Defense Committee that surrounded the Seven, he has captured with incisive lyric force not only the complex trial itself, but the nuances and rhythms—the soul—of the many months in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, living in a "state of trial" with the defendants, press corps, and visiting "Movement" figures who gravitated there. 'The cream of the Catholic Left"—as their FBI informer dubbed them—stood accused of conspiring to raid federal offices, bomb heating tunnels, and most spectacularly, to kidnap presidential adviser Henry Kissinger. Much more was on trial: the Catholic Left's philosophy of nonviolent civil disobedience; protest and dissent during a time of undeclared war; the Berrigan brothers' position as moral leaders of the new Left; and the reputation and integrity of the defendants' pre-trial accuser, J. Edgar Hoover and his Federal Bureau of Investigation. Within the courtroom and without, O'Rourke scrutinizes every aspect of the case: the FBI informer, Boyd F. Douglas, Jr.; the Berrigan-McAlister correspondence and "kidnap" letters; the roots from which the Catholic Left grew; and the reasons for the government's indictment. Here then, is a stunning glimpse at a landmark trial by a gifted young writer.
WILLIAM O'ROURKE was born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1945, and was raised in the Midwest. He has degrees from Columbia University and the University of Missouri. He has written fiction, nonfiction, and criticism for The Nation, The New York Times, Tri-Quarterly, and the Transatlantic Review. He is now living in New York City.
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