Writer Ken Kesey. Kesey was a leading figure of the 60's counterculture. As the leader of the Merry Pranksters, Kesey did as much as anyone to popularize the use of LSD and other hallucinogens. Kesey also wrote two of the most popular books of the era, "Sometimes a Great Notion" and "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest." In 1986, Kesey wrote "Demon Box," a look back at his life since the 60s. Kesey has a new book, called "Caverns." It's a novel he co-wrote with the 13 members of his University of Oregon fiction class.
Krassner publishes the countercultural and satirical magazine The Realist; he founded it in 1958, while he still lived with his parents. He also cofounded the yippies, who sought to combine politics and theater--and participated in the protests at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. Krassner now brings his left-leaning politics to the comedy stage.
Musician Robert Hunter collaborated with Jerry Garcia to write lyrics for many of the band's best known songs. He admits that some of his lyrics are "Joycean word salad" inspired by his LSD trips. Hunter has a new album of his own music, called Liberty.
Writer Jay Stevens has a new book about the creation of LSD in the 1940s, research into its therapeutic and weaponized potential in the 1950s, and its role in the 1960s counterculture--fueled in part by the influence of people like Timothy Leary, Ken Kesey and Aldous Huxley.
Robert Stone's novels explore the drug culture of the 1960s and the Vietnam War--both of which he lived through. Often associated with Ken Kesey's LSD-fueled Merry Band of Pranksters, Stone now lives a quiet life in New England.
Robert Stone counts promises and peoples' failure to keep them, what we chose to perceive in others and how that perception can be deceptive, and the difficulty of behaving decently as themes of his novels. He describes himself as a "writer of his times," and his work often addresses topical issues. His latest novel is "Children of Light."