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(en) US, Seattle, Paul Zilsel (1923-2006), in Memoriam

Date Tue, 01 Aug 2006 08:49:42 +0300


July 30, 2006 -- A Memorial Gathering for Paul Zilsel (1923-2006),
Seattle, Washington. Paul died recently in Canada. Born in Austria, Paul escaped
the Holocaust to the US with his father (Marxist sociologist Edgar Zilsel).
Paul was a highly regarded professor & theoretical physicist, one-time Communist
(hauled before HUAC's witch hunts), militant anarchist, Wobbly, antiwar veteran.
Co-founder: Red & Black Books, Left Bank Books Collective, Books-to-Prisoners;
he was involved in a broad variety of actions & groups, including Arab-Jewish
peace groups in Israel & the US.
Some 50+ friends, fellow-workers & family gathered in Seattle's Pike Place Market
in a tribute sponsored by Left Bank Books Collective. Poetry, remembrances, songs
& asides recalled his life, his legacy, his friendships (& rancorous disputes), his spirit,
& the ideas & integrity which Paul brought to our movement.

Wobbly songs by radical songster Jim Page (with by Joe Martin on harmonica) to
Yiddish songs & poem, old photos & flyers, a favorite poem of Paul's (by Bertolt Brecht),
& great food helped marked this event.

Amongst the many memories of Paul recalled, I was taken with the story
of an overflow meeting, years ago, in the Seattle City Council Chambers when it was
considering authorizing police use of the deadly hollow point bullets (overkill) & Paul
stood up & declared, amongst other things, that as a physicist he could better build them
a nuclear bomb.
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