The second volume in the acclaimed series that brings to life the groups of avant-garde writers, artists, and patrons who were keystones of what has come to be called Modernism, this book sheds new light on the hard-living, maverick poets and novelists--William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, and others--who coalesced into the Beats. Illustrations.
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Watson's no-holds-barred chronicle of Beat writers is part of the Circles of the Twentieth Century series, which is based on the belief that artistic innovation arises out of "constellations" of creative people. The theory is particularly appropriate when it comes to the close, even intimate friendships among the primary figures of the Beat movement: William Burroughs, Jack Kerouac, and Allen Ginsberg, and their icon and love object, the rapacious Neal Cassady. Watson juggles the life stories of each of these driven fellows in his fluid commentary, which is well supported by photographs, quotes, and sidebars. We learn the pertinent facts about each man's childhood and the winding paths that lead to their fertile, if turbulent relationships, which were based on a shared passion for experimentation with drugs, sexuality, and spontaneous literary expression. Watson covers all their wild adventures, documents the feverish creation of such galvanizing and influential works as On the Road, "Howl," and Naked Lunch, and describes the widening of the Beat circle to include such luminaries as Gary Snyder and Michael McClure. The Beats' fusion of life, legend, and literature was gutsy, unique, and indelible, and recognition of their importance continues to grow. Donna SeamanFrom Library Journal:
In the second volume in the series "Circles of the Twentieth Century," devoted to avant-garde writers, Watson (The Harlem Renaissance, Pantheon, 1995) traces the lives of Kerouac, Ginsberg, Burroughs, and company from their initial meetings in New York to their rise to literary fame. Watson also examines confluent movements like the San Francisco renaissance and the Black Mountain School. Watson offers no startling revelations, but he writes gracefully and has a gift for synthesis. An innovative book design makes interesting use of the margins for quotations, photos, and brief notes. This lively companion to John Tytell's Naked Angels (LJ 4/15/76) belongs in most literature collections.?William Gargan, Brooklyn Coll. Lib., CUNY
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Book Description Pantheon, 1995. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0679423710
Book Description Pantheon. Book Condition: Brand New. FREE domestic ground shipping. Fast priority express available. Tracking service included. Ships from USA (United States of America). Bookseller Inventory # 0679423710
Book Description Pantheon, 1995. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. lst ed. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0679423710
Book Description Pantheon, 1995. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110679423710