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Lennon's Last Interview: 'The Sixties Showed Us the Possibility' | The Nation

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Lennon's Last Interview: 'The Sixties Showed Us the Possibility'

It was thirty years ago today: December 8, 1980, on what would turn out to be the last day of John Lennon's life, he did an interview promoting his new album, Double Fantasy. He talked about the sixties: "The thing the sixties did was show us the possibility and the responsibility that we all had. It wasn't the answer. It just gave us a glimpse of the possibility."

Interviewer Dave Sholin of RKO radio, who taped Lennon in his apartment at the Dakota in New York City, asked him about feminism. "I'm more feminist now than I was when I sang 'Woman Is the Nigger of the World,'" he said. "Isn't it time we destroyed the macho ethic?... Where has it gotten us all of these thousands of years? Are we still going to have to be clubbing each other to death? Do I have to arm-wrestle you to have a relationship with you as another male?... Can we not have a relationship on some other level?"

And he spoke about "the opening up of the sixties." "Maybe in the sixties we were naïve and like children and later everyone went back to their rooms and said, 'We didn't get a wonderful world of flowers and peace.... The world is a nasty horrible place because it didn't give us everything we cried for.' Right? Crying for it wasn't enough."

Lennon also talked about his song "Power to the People," which had been released in 1971, nine years earlier. "In retrospect," he said, "if I were trying to say the same thing again, I would say the people have the power. I don't mean the power of the gun. They have the power to make and create the society they want."

 

The RKO interview was his last. When he finished it, he did a photo shoot at the Dakota with Annie Liebowitz for Rolling Stone, then headed off to the Record Plant with Yoko to work on her song "Walking on Thin Ice." At 10:30 pm their limo took them back to the Dakota and dropped them off at the curb. That's when he was killed.

 
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