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Freedom to OffendHow New York Remade Movie Culture$
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Raymond J. Haberski

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780813124292

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813124292.001.0001

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The “Flaming” Freedom of Jonas Mekas

The “Flaming” Freedom of Jonas Mekas

(p.119) 5 The “Flaming” Freedom of Jonas Mekas
Freedom to Offend


University Press of Kentucky

This chapter discusses Jonas Mekas, who embraced cinema in a way that more closely resembled the views of Cardinal Spellman and Martin Quigley. He believed movies could transform society and even destroy it. Mekas was arrested after a showing of an “indecent, lewd and obscene film” called Flaming Creatures, which he supplied and distributed to the New Bowery Theater. The controversy that was caused by this film ushered in a new period in the heroic age of moviegoing, during which the quality of the material being defended mattered less and less.

Keywords:   Jonas Mekas, Cardinal Spellman, Martin Quigley, Flaming Creatures, New Bowery Theater, controversy, society, heroic age

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