The summer of 1967, with its 'Love-Ins,' 'Be-ins,' and 'Flower Power,'

came to be known as "The Summer of Love," and was one of the seminal moments of our generation. Over thirty years later, we who came of age during the turbulent decade of the sixties are dismayed to realize that, to the young adults of today, those years are now ancient history.

The "Psychedelic Sixties" broke the rules in every conceivable way from music to fashion (or lack of it), to manners and mores. Boundaries were challenged and crossed in literature and art; the government was confronted head-on for its policies in Vietnam; the cause of civil rights was embraced by the young; and mind-expanding drugs were doing just that.

Were the sixties the best of times or the worst of times? Did America evolve as a nation and we as individuals? Are we better for the experience? We who were there have our own answers, but it is the historians who will write the collective answers for posterity. In any case, for better or worse, this dynamic, controversial, exciting time was our youth, our creation, and our legacy, and this exhibition is an attempt to revisit it, share it, and interpret it.

The Department of Special Collections has mined two of its richest literary collections for the items shown herein: the Clifton Waller Barrett Library of American Literature and the Marvin Tatum Collection of Contemporary Literature. George Riser, Exhibits Coordinator in Special Collections, ably and enthusiastically curated the show and wrote the catalogue. Others who generously provided assistance were: Gayle Cooper, Shanti Durkee, Mike Furlough, Dabney Gough, The Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center of the University of Texas at Austin, Ken Jensen, Felicia Johnson, Paul Maxwell, Heather Moore, Page Nelson-Saginor, Pauline Page, David Perkinson, Josie Pipkin, Michael Plunkett, Mary Riser, Kendon Stubbs, Charles W. Taylor III, Karen Wagner, and Daisy Wright. A special thanks goes to Stephen Railton for his advice, interest and contributions to the catalogue text.

Associate Director for Special Collections
Alderman Library, University of Virginia