“…It’s a tricky business, integrating new politics with tried and true social motifs…” — Tom Wolfe
It would not be surprising if on Monday the “Occupy Wall Street” motif dominated costumes at many Hallowe’en parties in the fashionable world. During the French Revolution, in Parisian salons hosts and hostesses wore Phrygian caps, Marianne dresses and ribbons with the colours of the tricolor. Louis Philippe II, the Duke of Orléans, the father of the future King Louis Philippe, even supported the Revolution – “Philippe Egalité” – before he was guillotined at the age of forty-six in 1793.
From an essay by Tom Wolfe in the June 8, 1970, issue of New York Magazine:
“[The Black Panther] Robert Bay, who just 41 hours ago was arrested in an altercation with the police, supposedly over a .38-caliber revolver that someone had in a parked car in Queens at Northern Boulevard and 104th Street or some such unbelievable place, and taken to jail on a most unusual charge called ‘criminal facilitation.’
“And now he is out on bail and walking into Leonard and Felicia Bernstein’s 13-room penthouse duplex on Park Avenue. Harassment & Hassles, Guns & Pigs, Jail & Bail – they’re real, these Black Panthers. The very idea of them, these real revolutionaries, who actually put their lives on the line, runs through Lenny’s duplex like a rogue hormone. Everyone casts a glance, or stares, or tries a smile, and then sizes up the house for the somehow delicious counterpoint.…
“These are nice. Little Roquefort cheese morsels rolled in crushed nuts. Very tasty. Very subtle. It’s the way the dry sackiness of the nuts tiptoes up against the dour savor of the cheese that is so nice, so subtle. Wonder what the Black Panthers eat here on the hors d’oeuvre trail? Do the Panthers like little Roquefort cheese morsels wrapped in crushed nuts this way, and asparagus tips in mayonnaise dabs, and meatballs petites au Coq Hardi, all of which are at this very moment being offered to them on gadrooned silver platters by maids in black uniforms with hand-ironed white aprons?…”