Home » Scotland » Alexander Trocchi

Alexander Trocchi


Alexander Trocchi was born in Glasgow in 1925 to an Italian father and Scottish mother. He had a short spell in the navy before studying philosophy at the University of Glasgow. He moved to Paris in the mid-40s where he started writing first as editor of a magazine called Merlin as well as other magazines, and then erotic fiction for the Olympia Press, most of which was banned in Britain and the United states. In the late 1950s he moved to New York where he experimented with drugs. His most famous book – Cain’s Book – is based on his sexual and pharmaceutical adventures at this time.

At this time he was influenced by the beats and existentialism but also by the Situationists, leading to his influential Invisible Insurrection of a Million Minds pamphlet, which led to the Sigma Project. Trocchi finally returned to London, where he worked as bookseller in Kensington Market. His wife died as a result of heroin addiction. He himself died in 1984. From the perspective of the 21st century, his views on drugs and his visionary approach seem somewhat antiquated, though interesting.

Books about Alexander Trocchi

Allan and Tim Niel Campbell: A Life in Pieces: Reflections on Alexander Trocchi
Andrew Murray Scott: Alexander Trocchi: the Making of the Monster

Other links

Alexander Trocchi
Alexander Trocchi
Alexander Trocchi, 1925-1984
Alexander Trocchi (1925-1984)
Hands off Alexander Trocchi!
Alex Trocchi & the revolt against authenticity
Mean streets (profile)
Lord Junk Himself (profile)
Alex Trocchi’s State Of Revolt At The Arts Lab In London


1954 My Life and Loves: Fifth Volume (a new volume of Harris’ memoirs, actually written by Trocchi)
1954 Young Adam (under pseudonym Frances Lengel)
1954 Helen and Desire (under pseudonym Frances Lengel)
1954 Carnal Days of Helen Seferis (under pseudonym Frances Lengel)
1955 School for Wives (under pseudonym Frances Lengel)
1955 White Thighs (under pseudonym Frances Lengel)
1955 Thongs (under pseudonym Frances Lengel)
1960 School for Sin (under pseudonym Frances Lengel)
1960 Sappho of Lesbos
1961 The Outsiders
1963 Cain’s Book
1965 Four Stories
1967 The Carnal Days of Helen Seferis
1970 Drugs of the Mind
1972 Man at Leisure (poetry)
1991 Invisible Insurrection of a Million Minds: A Trocchi Reader