Sunday, January 8, 2006

Q&A Todd Gitlin: Patriot acts

Originally appeared in the Boston Globe

The onetime president of SDS calls on liberals of his generation to embrace an older form of patriotism

By Harvey Blume

IN 1963, Todd Gitlin was president of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), the main vehicle for student activism during the '60s. Gitlin's landmark account of those years, "The Sixties: Years of Hope, Days of Rage" (1987), along with seven other books--including his 1999 novel, "Sacrifice"--and innumerable shorter pieces, constitute engagé writing at its best. What you get from Gitlin is the convergence of a deep political culture with a sharp sense of urgency.