Bohemian New Orleans: The Story of the Outsider and Loujon Pressby Jeff Weddle
In 1960, Jon Edgar and Louise "Gypsy Lou" Webb founded Loujon Press on Royal Street in New Orleans's French Quarter. The small publishing house quickly became a giant. Heralded by the Village Voice and the New York Times as one of the best of its day, the Outsider, the press's literary review, featured, among others, Charles Bukowski, Allen/i>/i>/i>
In 1960, Jon Edgar and Louise "Gypsy Lou" Webb founded Loujon Press on Royal Street in New Orleans's French Quarter. The small publishing house quickly became a giant. Heralded by the Village Voice and the New York Times as one of the best of its day, the Outsider, the press's literary review, featured, among others, Charles Bukowski, Allen Ginsberg, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Robert Creeley, Denise Levertov, and Walter Lowenfels. Loujon published books by Henry Miller and two early poetry collections by Bukowski.
Bohemian New Orleans traces the development of this courageous imprint and examines its place within the small press revolution of the 1960s.
Drawing on correspondence from many who were published in the Outsider, back issues of the Outsider, contemporary reviews, promotional materials, and interviews, Jeff Weddle shows how the press's mandarin insistence on production quality and its eclectic editorial taste made its work nonpareil among peers in the underground. Throughout, Bohemian New Orleans reveals the messy, complex, and vagabond spirit of a lost literary age.
Jeff Weddle is assistant professor of library and information studies at the University of Alabama. His work has appeared in Publishing History and Beat Scene.
Learn about Director Wayne Ewing's documentary film "The Outsiders of New Orleans: Loujon Press" and watch a trailer at http://www.loujonpress.com/
- University Press of Mississippi
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Never visiting New Orleans, I have always had a fascination for their seafood cooking; especially Gumbo. This nonfiction book was elegantly crafted by a fellow author and poet, named Jeff Weddle. He carries the reader on a quest from the 1960s till today, explaining how the Loujon Press and its’ literary review, The Outsider came into existence. I enjoyed the introduction and acknowledgments inside of the book. Weddle is a fanatic for Charles Bukowski and I enjoyed Chapters 6 and 7 the most. When I first saw the front cover of this book, I asked myself “who are the two people and why are both pictures printed in black and white?” Then, as I completed Chapter 1, it hit me. These were the owners and founders and these pictures were taken in the 1960s. I never knew Jeff Weddle’s name was catalogued into the U.S. Library of Congress. Reading the testimonials from others on the back cover made me more intrigued to see what this press was all about. Seeing the amount of quantitative data inside of this book, it was very wise for Weddle to include an Index in the back section. On a personal note, I met Jeff through Port Cities Review (operated by Mark Vanderpool, who I am also friends with). When I did some personal research on Jeff and found this nonfiction book, I was shocked. A poet transitioning to writing a book about facts! What an amazing transition! The last major thing I want to point out about this book is the author remains unbiased. Many times when I read a nonfiction book, the author only explains their side of the event instead of the holistic view. I recommend this book to those who want to learn about the establishment of the Loujon Press and The Outsider. If you have never been to New Orleans or enjoy the city upon visit, this book is for you.