The American Dissident: Literature, Democracy & Dissidence

Curriculum Mortae
—A Dissident’s Resume—
G. Tod Slone
217 Commerce Rd., Barnstable, MA 02630


Dissident Objectives: “Go upright and vital, and speak the rude truth in all ways” (Emerson); let my life “be a counterfriction to stop the machine” (Thoreau), “write because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention” (Orwell), and teach students the importance of dissidence in a democracy, and open their hearts to hardcore criticism, while encouraging them to learn and create from it.

Dissident Formation:
—The Sixties. While the Sixties perhaps sensitized me to ubiquitous corruption, it also pressured me to de-individualize, groupthink and group behave, in essence, prerequisites for a university professor.
—Université du Maine (1980-82) and Ecole Nationale de Mécanique (1982-88). While a lecteur de langue anglaise in France, I became interested in reprobates Villon and Céline, as well as other French authors. There, I also read Bukowski in French and wrote some of my first poems in French.
—Elmira College (1989-1991) Faculty/administrative corruption/apathy transformed me into a firm dissident. Deans sided with a handful of students, who complained now and then I’d offended their sensitivities.
—My first truly critical essays and poems were published in The Octagon, the student newspaper.
—I created and disseminated my first critical newsletter, “Purple Marasmus,” which I distributed mostly to the Humanities faculty. Elmira’s color logo is purple.
—Fitchburg State College (1991-1996). Here my eyes were opened to further corruption (e.g., homosexual department chair wanting me to visit him every weekend at his home, highly whimsical faculty evaluations, nepotism, eviction mid-semester from my office w/o due process, a prevaricating dean and apathetic faculty). The American Association of University Professors and the ACLU of Massachusetts remained silent regarding my grievances of state-college corruption.
—The student, local, and state newspapers (Boston Globe), as well as The Chronicle of Higher Education, refused to publish my accounts of corruption at Fitchburg State, which provoked me to begin publishing a newsletter, Corruption Magazine, which morphed into Corruption Massachusetts
—The Concord Poetry Center director Joan Houlihan stated: “The idea of your teaching a workshop or delivering a lecture on the art of literary protest or poetry protest, or simply protest (Concord is where it all started!) occurred to me even before you mentioned it, so, yes, it’s something I will consider as we progress (this is only our first event).  However, I must say I don’t favor having you teach at the center if you protest the reading.” Evidently, I chose to protest the reading.
—The complete silence of PEN New England (“defending freedom of expression”), regarding impediments to my freedom of expression and the likely influence of poet Joan Houlihan on PEN director Karen Wulf, both comfortably installed at Lesley University, further provoked my questioning and challenging of such organizations.
—The silence of some 500 college English professors regarding my attempts to interest them in radically altering the academic culture of sycophancy, turning a blind eye, careerism, PC, and prevarication confirmed my observations that college professors tended to be apparatchik careerists first, while truth tellers last.
Dissident Experience:
—Eviction from my college office (Fitchburg State College) mid- semester due to one complaint by a colleague that she was afraid of me, despite my having no criminal record, confirmed my suspicions that college deans tended to be indifferent to truth.
—Creation in 1998 of The American Dissident, a 501 3c nonprofit journal of literature, democracy, and dissidence that placed truth telling and risk above team playing, networking, and turning a blind eye, was my response to corruption experienced first hand.
—Arrest and incarceration in a Concord jail cell (1999) for protesting the absence of free speech at Walden Pond State Reservation and the consequent indifference to that of local media and Thoreau Society furthered my suspicions that citizen rights were easily trampled upon.
—Poems I’d written in French highly critical of the poetry organizers, who’d taken up my challenge to invite me to the Festival International de la Poésie de Trois-Rivières, 2001, were read at the festival in front of 150 other well-remunerated invited poets, confirming that poets were as indifferent as anyone else to intellectual corruption.
—The Watertown Free Public Library (2008) issued me a six-month no-trespass order without due process for my attempting to interest its reference librarian in subscribing to The American Dissident.
—My staging of various solo protests critical of state-sponsored poets at the Concord Poetry Center, Concord Free Public Library, Robert Creeley Prize in Acton, and elsewhere confirmed poets were largely indifferent to questions of free speech and vigorous debate.
—My critical art exhibits at the Concord Free Public Library and Sturgis Library (Sept 2011).
—My permanent banning without warning or due process by Sturgis Library director Lucy Loomis (June 2012) due to two open letters distributed to the directors of the Clams Library System of Cape Cod one week prior to the banning and the full apathy regarding the banning of the Barnstable County Human Rights Commission, PEN New England, the town counselors, etc.
—My numerous critical letters to the editor of student newspapers at colleges employing me confirmed professor indifference to matters of corruption, free speech, and vigorous debate. A number of those letters can viewed on my blogsite.
—My numerous dissident publications of poetry, essays, satirical cartoons, novels, and plays continued to question and challenge, amongst other things, taxpayer-funded cultural organizations—local, state, and federal. Some of those publications can be viewed on my website and at and
—My placing freedom of expression on a higher level than the order of my superior at American Public University System to cease responding to an outside student financing organization’s criticism of my teaching and professional behavior. The superior then “separated” me from the university. Euphemisms, not truth!
Foreign Languages Spoken and Written: French (near-native fluency—Parisian and québécois), Spanish (fluent), Italian (intermediate fluency), German (reading fluency)

Professional Formation & Experience:
Doctorate in English (Université de Nantes, Nantes, France), M.A. in French (Middlebury College), B.A. (Northeastern University); Online adjunct English/Spanish instructor, American Public University System; English instructor, US Navy (Central Texas College),Visiting professor of French and Spanish (Grambling State University), Online writing instructor (Davenport University), Assistant professor of French and Spanish (Bennett College) and (Fitchburg State College), Assistant professor of Humanities (Elmira College), Lecteur de langue anglaise (École Nationale Supérieure de Mécanique, Nantes, France) and Université du Maine (Le Mans, France), Adult Education instructor of Spanish (Concord-Carlisle Adult & Community Education, Concord, MA), High school mid-year replacement teacher of Spanish (Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School, MA), Community college instructor of Spanish (Mount Wachussetts Community College, Gardener, MA), Language program director in Martinique, France (ASA International Adventures, Amronk, NY), Lecturer of French (Northeastern University, Boston, MA), High School teacher of French (Nazareth Academy, Wakefield, MA), Shipyard welder (General Dynamics), radiation monitor (Groton submarine base), FDIC bank examiner (South Dakota), interpreter/translator (Le Mans auto race—11 consecutive years), census taker…




This CM is a work in progress…