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Suze Rotolo
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    (November 20, 1943-February 25, 2011)
    Born in Queens, New York
    Birth name was Susan Elizabeth Rotolo
    Painter, illustrator and 'book artist'
    Taught at the Parsons School of Design in New York City
    Appeared in the documentary 'No Direction Home: Bob Dylan' (2005)
    Wrote 'A Freewheelin' Time: A Memoir of Greenwich Village in the Sixties' (2008)
    She was far better known for being Bob Dylan's girlfriend in the early 60s than for her art.
    She had an abortion after getting pregnant by Dylan.
    She refused to talk about Dylan for years, calling him 'the elephant in the room of my life.'
    She was a 'red diaper baby.' (Her parents belonged to the American Communist Party.)
    She violated a US ban on travel to Cuba (1964), where she said about opponents of Fidel Castro, 'These gusanos [worms] are not suppressed. There can be open criticism of the regime.'
    She said about appearing on the cover of 'The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan,' 'Every time I look at that picture, I think I look fat.'
    Dylan wrote, 'She was the most erotic thing I had ever seen.' (Her description of him was 'charming in a scraggly way.')
    She worked for the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and persuaded Dylan to address civil rights in his songs.
    Dylan also credited her with interesting him in Artur Rimbaud and Bertolt Brecht.
    She inspired several of Dylan's early love songs, including 'Don't Think Twice, It's Alright,' 'Tomorrow Is A Long Time,' 'One Too Many Mornings' and 'Boots of Spanish Leather.'
    Her relationship with Dylan broke up partly over his affair with singer Joan Baez, partly over her need to maintain her independence.
    Although she and Dylan lost touch for several years, he helped out when she lost many of her possessions (including the coat she wore on the cover of 'The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan') in an apartment fire.

Credit: C. Fishel

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