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Published on February 25th, 2012 | by Charles Gonzo


Welcome to the Gonzo Lecture

It’s great to be invited to write for the Huffington Post of the Gonzo World.

There’s a whole bunch of crap talked about Gonzo by a lot of people who ought to know a lot better. Yet here at Go Gonzo Journal are a bunch of writers and thinkers committed to seeing past the bullshit in all things and have already taken their place on the ride.

Being familiar with the greatness of Hunter S. Thompson’s works and being captured by the essence of his writings are really two very different perspectives. The former acknowledges his place in the contemporary literary history of the United States of America, the latter recognises the importance of the legacy of Gonzo counterculture to the representation of the individual’s self and their perpetual escape from oppressive power in all aspects of human life. This means, if we’ve simply seen Gonzo only as fun, or drug-fueled chaos, then we’ve completely missed the whole point.

To me, Gonzo is the basis of good education. The foul alternative that we presently see is that we’re conditioned by the modern education system to believe that there’s a game of life we have to buy in to; that somehow, we’ll survive if we learn the rules and master the plays. The secret, we’re taught, is to be what others want us to be, and to be it better at it than our peers.

However, the basis of the pedagogy developed by our educational forefathers in ancient Greece was to question and debate until a student could find their own truth. This is a position that wholesale consumerization of some sort of  education “product” has attempted to decimate. To date, this trend’s becoming a whole lot worse on both sides of the water.

Education has become no longer about questioning, and in a sense “rebellion” against illegitimate power systems dedicated to “dumbing us down” and causing us to conform to our masters. It has instead become about buying an education which at best is often a kind of psychological conditioning, preparing us for “success” in the brave new world awaiting us “out there.” It was never supposed to be this way, and it still won’t be, not while I’m alive.

For me, there’s no better place to start.

Welcome to The Gonzo Lecture.

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About the Author

London-based university educator, author, scholar and Gonzo researcher. "It's wrong when it stops being fun."

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