Archive Letter: Going All Gonzo

Hunter S. Thompson dedicated his life to pushing things to the limit. In this letter to an editor at Playboy, he reflects on the style of an epic biographical feature he was working on.

  • Words: Avaunt

Hunter S. Thompson was a journalist and author dedicated to pushing things to the limit, both in his art and personal life. Politically minded, he became known for his intense hatred of President Nixon. He ran unsuccessfully for sheriff in Colorado and has been quoted as saying, “I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they’ve always worked for me.”

He committed suicide in 2005 aged 67, and his ashes were fired out of a huge cannon into the atmosphere in a ceremony arranged by his friend, Johnny Depp.

We salute all your wonderful, brave and crazy adventures, Mr. Thompson.

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Further Reading

To the Congo

Children play on abandoned planes at Goma Airport during a rare time when no security forces, or the UN, were stationed there, in this series by Magnum photojournalist Michael Christopher Brown.

Up Close: Pools

Photographer Stephan Zirwes’ ‘Pool’ series illustrates the incredible waste of potential drinking water – not only in private pools but also in the privatisation of a public asset for commercial reasons.

The Airship Revolution

It’s the longest aircraft in the world, ready to set more records than Concorde yet its presence is bashful, modest, perhaps embarrassed by its own simplicity. Avaunt discovers the future of aeronautics.

Peak Performance

Playwright David Greig describes how he grappled with turning one of the most famous survival stories of all time into a gripping psychological drama.

Ice Music

Jazz musician Terje Isungset on why a trumpet made from a Greenland glacier will sound different to one made from a polluted frozen lake.

Joss Naylor, Fell Runner

Avaunt travels to England’s picturesque Lake District to meet shepherd and legendary fell runner Joss Naylor. We ask the man who has become an integral part of Lakeland culture what keeps him running at the age of 80.
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