So last spring in Petaluma, I bought a first edition paperback copy of Maggie Cassidy by Jack Kerouac. I have a modern edition that I read in high school and I obviously haven’t done much with my first edition copy besides look at how pretty it is for the past year. Today I was looking at a gallery of Kerouac book covers, and found this little factoid about Maggie Cassidy:
"The first printing of Maggie Cassidy included, on page 167, a letter from Jacky Dulouz’s friend Vinny with an eight-line P.S. containing five expletives. This was quickly replaced by the following innocuous version in the second and subsequent printings:
'P.S. (A HORRIBLE UNPRINTABLE P.S. — SIGNED SHASSPERE)'
but not before some copies of the first printing had been sent out to retailers.
This censorship has remained in all American editions until the present day. In the UK something like the original uncensored version was published in 1975 and lasted until 2000 when UK editions reverted to the censored form.”
I went and got my copy off the bookshelf to see which one I have, and it turns out I have the unexpurgated edition! Pretty awesome addition to my day.
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