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The Burning of Reich's Books

A great omission on this site so far is any mention of the burning of Reich's books by the US legal authorities in  1956 and 1960. This historical event has come to my awareness again through e-mails to me about the forthcoming documentary film being planned by WRIT, the Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust. My apologies for such a big omission. If you are a new comer to orgonomy, here are the stark, incontrovertible facts.

In the nineteen thirties Reich was listed for execution by both the Nazis and the Soviet GPU (Now known as the KGB). His books were immediately illegal and must have been amongst the millions of volumes burnt publicly in shows of revenge on all anti-Nazi influences. (He escaped to Scandinavia when the Nazis came to power in 1933.) Many visitors to this site will not know that his books were also burnt in 1956 in accordance with an injunction issued legally by a US court. They were deemed to be 'labelling' for the orgone accumulator which had already been condemned as a fraudulent medical device. A further burning also took place in 1960.

A happy paradox of this history is that Roger Straus, the founder of the New York publishers, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, was so outraged by this act of gross censorship that he undertook to ensure that Reich's books were available to future readers. Hence the publication since the nineteen sixties of virtually all of Reich's books by FS&G. Straus has since died and it is possible that the  firm will not continue with this commitment, though at present all the titles so far published are still available as print-on-demand titles.

The forthcoming documentary, written and to be directed by Kevin Hinchey of the WRIT exposes this history to public gaze for the first time and tells the whole story of Reich's life and work, supported by free access to the whole of Reich's archive, which he directed to be kept sealed for fifty years after his death. 

It is vital that this film gets made. The UK, where the presence of orgonomy is weaker than in any other western country, needs this film.  Please give as generously as you possibly can. Here is the link to the appeal.

 https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/25874147/wilhelm-reich-documentary-film-project

If you go to WRIT channel on  YouTube, you can also view the video about the appeal and the forthcoming film. PLEASE follow these links and give as generously as you can. (The Kickstart appeal ended on November 21st, 2014. The appeal target was for about $160,000 and raised over $180,000. This will finance phase one of the film's making. They need about the same sum again for phase two, which will, presumably, be the subject of a further appeal when they have completed phase one of the project.)

You can read the full history of the burning of Reich's books in Wilhelm Reich vs. the U.S.A. by Jerome Greenfield, (1974), Norton, New York.

Posted October 31st, 2014. Last edited September 10th, 2015.    Back to News Page