Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

'Lust' Poem at Center of Controversy.(Metropolitan)

Byline: Journal staff writer Scott Sandlin.


Free speech and academic freedom issues had University of New Mexico officials squirming in the 1960s, but probably none was as virulent as the "Love Lust" poem controversy of 1969 and 1970.

Legislators who became apoplectic over the classroom dissemination of poems by Beat poet Lenore Kandel of San Francisco especially one dealing with oral sex threatened to curtail funding for the university. They set up a University Study Committee that Harold Lavender likens to the House UnAmerican Activities Committee in the red-baiting 1950s.

Lavender, now 82, was UNM's vice president of student affairs at the time, but his career has included such postings as public school teacher, city manager and mayor in Aztec, school superintendent in Raton and UNM dean of students. …

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