My favourite books 15: Revolt Into Style

Revolt into Style: The Pop Arts in Britain – George Melly

Allen Lane The Penguin Press 1970; this edition Penguin 1972

The intellectual counterpoint to Awopbopaloobop Alopbamboom, this book is so well-loved that it’s just a pile of loose pages.  Melly is remembered now as a trad jazzer and raconteur; in his day, he was an acute cultural and social critic, and a leading expert on the Surrealist movement.  Revolt into Style covers music, TV, film, theatre and literature, and gives lie to the old “if you were there in the 60s, you won’t remember it” canard.

The cover is a pre-Pepper Peter Blake, acquired by the British Library architect Colin St John Wilson.  Wilson bequeathed his pop art collection to Pallant House in Chichester, which has created a very intense, high-quality 60s room in one of the country’s best regional galleries.