Richard Neville

and Oz

In April 1963, the underground magazine Oz hit the newsstands. The brainchild of Australian writer Richard Neville, Oz would come to stand as a symbol of free speech, experimentation, and the socially rebellious years of the 1960s and 1970s, raising ire from authorities from the first issue to the last. It was published as a satirical humor magazine until 1969 in Sydney, but it became better known in its British incarnation as a psychedelic, “hippie” magazine, published in London between 1967 and 1973.

Richard Neville Papers

Richard Neville Papers and Oz at the Beinecke

Richard Neville Papers include correspondence, writings, notebooks, scrapbooks, printed materials, artwork, and audiovisual materials by, to, or related to Richard Neville and Oz magazine.

Oz, nos. 1-48, February 1967-Winter 1973.

 

Other Richard Neville and Oz material at the Beinecke

London newspapers with articles related to the Oz obscenity trial, 1971.

Rex Weiner collection of underground press material, 1955-1981, includes letters from Richard Neville.

Oz

Richard Neville was the central editor throughout Oz’s decade-long run, starting in 1963. He was joined by Richard Walsh and Martin Sharp on the Sydney edition, and by Jim Anderson and, later, Felix Dennis, on the London iteration. Oz became synonymous with the artwork and illustrations of Robert Crumb and Martin Sharp, and featured articles by such prominent counterculture figures of the time as Bob Hughes, Germaine Greer, David Widgery, Abbie Hoffman, Gerry Rubin, Lillian Roxon, Lenny Bruce. The magazine was the subject of two famous obscenity trials, the first in Australia in 1964, the second in England in 1971, for which the three editors famously dressed as women during their London court appearance. In both cases, the magazine’s editors were acquitted on appeal after initially being found guilty and sentenced to rigid jail terms. On the night the editors were sent to jail, John Lennon and Yoko Ono broadcast their song “God Save Oz.”

 

Complete collection of Oz London covers (February 1967-November 1973)

Resources

Interview with Richard Neville, The Overlook Press (July 26, 2012).

 

Felix Dennis Official Website, co-editor of London edition.

 

"The Sum of Oz Magazine," The Australian (March 23, 2013).