Gilbert Shelton, Famed Freak Bros Artist, and Graphic Novel Publisher Paul Buhle
by Rag Radio with Thorne Dreyer
In 1969, activist and history grad student Paul Buhle published a special graphic issue of his SDS journal, Radical America. He enlisted Austin-based cartoonist of Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers fame, Gilbert Shelton, to edit what would be the first merger of New Left politics with the burgeoning counterculture and underground comix movements.
Now, in 2018, Radical America Komiks has been reissued with a new introduction by Buhle and foreword by Jay Kinney. Paul, a prominent historian of the Left and popular culture critic, now publishes graphic novels and radical comics. Shelton, whose Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers -- characterized by Buhle as "totemic" figures in the counterculture -- first appeared in Austin's The Rag, also created Wonder Wart-Hog, Fat Freddie's Cat, and Feds 'N' Heads. Shelton and Robert Crumb are generally considered the preeminent artists of the comix movement. Gilbert joins us from Paris, France, where he now lives.