Four and a half decades ago, Screw magazine announced its arrival by means of a short manifesto. The publication’s purveyors promised to never ink out pubic hair and never apologize.
This morning, at a hospice in Brooklyn, Al Goldstein, the co-founder and flamboyant publisher of that publication passed away at age 77. His death follows earlier, premature reports last year at this time. From this morning’s New York Times obit:
Mr. Goldstein did not invent the dirty magazine, but he was the first to present it to a wide audience without the slightest pretense of classiness or subtlety. Sex as depicted in Screw was seldom pretty, romantic or even particularly sexy. It was, primarily, a business, with consumers and suppliers like any other.
Goldstein and New York Press editor Jim Buckley each ponied up $175 to launch Screw in November 1968. The first weekly edition included the results of Goldstein’s field test of an artificial vagina.
NYT Metro reporter Andy Newman does a great job of touching all the colorful bases in the obit, ending with a mention of Goldstein’s unlikely awards recognition at age 69. Screw was relaunched in 2005 under new ownership. RIP.