Abbie Hoffman is explored in The Trial of the Chicago 7, so let’s look at his life after the trial. How did he die and what was the cause of death?
Back when lockdowns were initially announced and the cinemas temporarily closed their doors, film fans were already mourning what they suspected to be an uneventful year at the movies.
When they reopened, audiences were invited to check out the likes of Christopher Nolan’s Tenet and more. However, they have once again taken a hit with a string of highly anticipated blockbusters delaying their release.
On the other hand, it hasn’t been a dull year for film lovers – far from it.
Thanks to streaming services, an impressive selection of new releases have made it to screens and Netflix has done a particularly good job of offering content.
The likes of Da 5 Bloods, I’m Thinking of Ending Things and The Devil All the Time are destined to feature on many best of the year lists come December, as is The Trial of the Chicago 7.
Written and directed by Aaron Sorkin, the film sees the writer of The Social Network and Steve Jobs return with his sophomore directorial effort after having helmed 2017’s Molly’s Game.
Chronicling the titular group of anti-Vietnam War protesters, Abbie Hoffman is portrayed by Sacha Baron Cohen (Borat), but let’s get to know more about the man himself…
Abbie Hoffman: The Trial of the Chicago 7
Real name Abbot Howard Hoffman, Abbie was a political and social activist who co-founded the “Yippies” – the Youth International Party – with Anita Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, Nancy Kurshan, and Paul Krassner.
He was a crucial figure of the countercultural movement in America in the 1960s and 1970s; a leader of the Flower Power movement.
His activity led to him being arrested and tried with six others for conspiracy and inciting to riot. As the film explored, these individuals came to be known as the Chicago 7.
Violent clashes between authority and civilians during the 1968 Democratic National Convention led to the arrests.
They were initially 8, in fact, but Bobby Seale’s arrest wasn’t lumped in with the others.
Let’s explore what happened to Abbie Hoffman after The Trial of the Chicago 7.
How did Abbie Hoffman die?
Abbie Hoffman died at the age of 52 after swallowing 150 phenobarbital tablets along with alcohol.
This is noted by Meaww, which adds that he was found in his apartment on April 12th 1989. When his body was discovered, he was covered in pages of handwritten notes and the body was then moved to Doylestown Hospital for an autopsy.
Meaww adds that Abbie had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1980 and suffered from depression after his mother’s cancer diagnosis.
As for the final verdict, his death was ruled a suicide but some weren’t convinced, notably David Dellinger, whom the previous source reports said: “I don’t believe for one moment the suicide thing.”
Nevertheless, the coroner argued: “There is no way to take that amount of phenobarbital without intent. It was intentional and self-inflicted.”
What happened to Abbie Hoffman after The Trial of the Chicago 7?
Inevitably, Abbie Hoffman was widely known by the time the 1960s came to close.
After the trial and the events depicted in the film, however, Vanity Fair addresses that he was arrested for selling cocaine in 1973.
He skipped bail and after cosmetic surgery he lived under the name Barry Freed.
His attention became more focused on environmental concerns but the source includes that he turned himself in in 1980 and served a year in jail.
On work release he reunited with Jerry Rubin but was later arrested in 1986 while at a demonstration taking place at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
He also penned Steal This Urine Test; beforehand, he wrote Steal This Book.
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