St. Marks Place in New York City has spawned countless artistic and political movements, providing a backdrop for social and cultural revolutionaries from Leon Trotsky to Andy Warhol, the Ramones to the Beastie Boys, W. H. Auden to Keith Haring, Allen Ginsberg to the skaters of the movie Kids. Every group has maintained that their era, and no other, marked the street's apex, and that after they left--whether "they" were the Beats, the hippies, the punks, or the hardcore kids--the street was dead. In this idiosyncratic work of narrative history, enriched by more than two hundred interviews and dozens of rare images, St. Marks native Ada Calhoun uncovers the largely unknown 400-year history of this epicenter of American cool. She traces the street from its origins as a Dutch farm to its current incarnation as a hipster playground--organized around those pivotal moments when yet another group of miscreant denizens declared, "St. Marks is dead."--Adapted from book jacket.
"During lulls, she read books about the black experience, like Malcolm X's autobiography, as if studying for a test that the whole neighborhood was about to take."
Definitely a good read for NY history buffs and ex–East Villagers (of which I'm both).