Chain-Smoking Rebel Playwright Lillian Hellman Was Born In New Orleans

Lillian.

Blacklisted as a Communist sympathizer by Hollywood.

Her most famous work banned in Chicago, London, and Boston.

Drunkard.

Headstrong.

Lust-filled, and promiscuous.

A “tough broad … the kind of girl who can take the tops off bottles with her teeth.”

Louche companion of Dashiell Hammet who cracked Hellman in the jaw at a party one night, and refused to marry her in the course of their 30-year affair.

Elia Kazan would call Hellman a “bitch with balls.” But in light of each of their appearances at the McCarthy hearings on Communism in the US it could be said that Lillian had enough balls for the both of them. Continue Reading

The Black Panthers Desire Stronghold in New Orleans

“Death to the pigs!” “Death to the pigs!” “Death to the pigs!”

It’s fall 1970, and the folks who live in New Orleans’ Desire Housing Project are verbally unloading on police officers who have shown up 250 strong in an effort to forcibly evict the local chapter of the Black Panther Party.

Little kids are chanting, middle-aged folks are hollering, and old folks are shouting as well. The crowd is determined to drive the police out of their neighborhood, and in a result that seems shocking a half-century later; they did just that. The cops withdrew. Continue Reading