Antinomian in psychology, this strand of the counter culture was attracted not just to sexual freedom but to mystic, ecstatic and visionary forms of consciousness.
Here such disparate sources as Alan Watt on Zen, Allen Ginsburg’s cultivation of forms of Indian spirituality, and above all, the claims of the pioneers of LSD, Timothy Leary and Richard Alpert, were of vital importance.
This position fit into an American tradition, stretching back to the Transcendentalist movement and the utopian experiments of the first half of the 19public.
At the core of the book was a series of chapters dealing with writers and thinkers such as Herbert Marcuse and Norman O.
This convergence of Marxism and psychoanalysis also grew out of two unanswered questions: why had the working class parties in 1914 fought for their respective countries rather than refusing to take up arms against the capitalist powers and, second, why and how did Nazism and Fascism have the appeal they did, even to the working class?
The pioneering work here was often done by figures who fled the Nazis and came to America—Wilhelm Reich and also Erich Fromm, along with Theodor Adorno and, of course, Herbert Marcuse from the Frankfurt School in exile(based in New York and southern California).
Brown, Allen Ginsburg and the Alan Watts, Tim Leary, and Paul Goodman, with preparatory chapters on young people, specifically students, as the core constituency, a kind of “visionary company.” Indeed, for Roszak what was most valuable about the counter culture was the visionary perspective, one open to other realms than what secular science and technology were committed to.
One way of grasping the nature of the counter culture was, and is, to distinguish between political and cultural radicalism, between a revolution in institutions and a revolution in consciousness, including between the New Left(including the anti-War movement) and the counter culture.