Gonzo Republic, Hunter S. Thompson’s America

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Gonzo Republic looks at Hunter S. Thompson’s complex relationship with America. Thompson was a patriot but also a stubborn individualist. Stephenson examines the whole range of Thompson’s work, from his early reporting from the South American client states of the USA in the 1960s to his twenty-first-century internet columns on sport, politics and 9/11. Stephenson argues that Thompson inhabited, but was to some extent reacting against, the tradition of American individualism begun by the Founding Fathers and continued by Emerson and Thoreau. Thompson sought out the edge the threshold of chaos and insanity in order to define himself. His characters enact the same quest, travelling through the surreal landscape of his literary America: the Gonzo Republic.

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