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William Buckley Interviews Hugh Hefner on Firing Line (1966)

William Buckley Interviews Hugh Hefner on Firing Line (1966)

In 1962, Hugh Hefner published ‘The Playboy Philosophy.’ Hefner began writing The Playboy Philosophy in 1962 with the first chapter appearing in the December, 1962. The first separate printings came in four softcover volumes - Part I, Installments 1-7; Part II, Installments 8-12; Part III, Installments 13-18; Part IV, Installments 19-22. These preceded the final book publication.

Hefner started the Philosophy by citing the critiques of a Jewish professor, a Methodist reverend, and Unitarian minister, and ended the series over two years later with a four-part transcription of a "religious roundtable" that was broadcast by station WINS in New York. The roundtable focused on The Playboy Philosophy and the emerging American sexual revolution.

In this 'Firing Line' appearance from 1966, the ever erudite conservative firebrand William F. Buckley gets his knives out in an attempt to skewer Playboy publisher Hugh Hefner about what he dismisses as what he sees as the philosophy’s inherent immorality.

When asked if he rejects conventional American Judeo-Christian sexual behavior Hefner replies, “Yes, at the essence of them I think I do. The philosophy, really I think, is an anti-puritanism, a response really to the puritan part of our culture. To that extent… sex is a part of the Judeo-Christian ethic that got lost and is the part that’s restricted and not truly naturalistic.”

Continuing to hold his ground against Buckley, Hugh Hefner adds, “It’s been called a new morality and I really think that’s what this thing called the American sexual revolution is all about.”

Indeed, Playboy magazine was undoubtedly a major catalyst in kicking off the so-called sexual revolution in the 1960s.


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Playboy is a men's lifestyle and entertainment magazine founded in Chicago in 1953 by Hugh Hefner. The publication is known for its centerfolds of nude and semi-nude[4] models known as Playmates. In addition to the flagship magazine in the United States, special nation-specific versions of Playboy are published worldwide.

Produced in his Hyde Park kitchen, the first issue in December 1953, was undated; Hefner was unsure there would be a second. The cover price was 50¢.

The novel Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury was published in 1953 then serialized in the March, April, and May 1954 issues of Playboy.

 


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