The Aardvark Interview

In 1963, Shel Silverstein sat down with a writer for Aardvark magazine, a Chicago humor magazine that started out as the official magazine for Roosevelt University, where Shel studied in the early 1950s. According to Jay Lynch, noted comic book artist, co-founder of the Comix movement of the late 1960s, and a Roosevelt grad, Aardvark "was the college humor mag at Roosevelt  University--but when the administration saw the first issue, they took away any official sanction of the mag, and forced [them] to publish off-campus." After that Aardvark, edited by Jeff Begun, gathered a cult following as it examined social issues, politics, and typical college humor fare, along with a heavy dose of cartooning within its pages. The magazine published quarterly, and this interview was presented in the Autumn issue.

What makes this interview so astonishing--especially considering his later silence towards media outlets--is that Silverstein talks so much. He had always been a big believer in letting his work do the talking for him, an idea expounded on in some detail here. While his personal life remains untouched by the interviewer, Shel's personal thoughts and philosophies are not--and some of what he has to say can be quite surprising, and even contradictory. Suffice it to say that it is, by far, the most in-depth interview Silverstein did that I've been able to find, and it wouldn't surprise me that after saying what he had to say to the Aardvark, he felt no need whatsoever to repeat himself--regardless of whether the interview could be tracked down in the future.

I do hope all of you will enjoy reading this. I've read it many times already, and I plan to read it many more times. There's a lot of thought-provoking comments, and I'd like to discuss it with anyone who wishes to. If you are so inclined, please, email me.

                         The Interview  ===>