StudentShare solutions
Triangle menu

Beat Generation. On the Road Jack Kerouac - Research Paper Example

Not dowloaded yet

Extract of sample
Beat Generation. On the Road Jack Kerouac

This ‘other’ life was personified through physical and spiritual expressions like drugs, madness, holiness, music, culture and sexuality. To put the ethos and aesthetics of the beat generation in a single sentence, they “sought knowledge through experience, especially experience from the underside of life” (Wagner, 12). The works of these authors had an “unstructured style and unconventional language, (meant) to convey their opposition to the cultural and aesthetic standards of previous generations” (Wagner, 14). Their writing style has been found as being influenced by the “popular jazz and bebop music of the times” (Wagner, 38). The key emotion which is associated with this group could be termed as ““beatness” or “weariness” with the world” (Wagner, 36).
This paper envisages finding out how the elements of beat generation that Kerouac used in his novel, On the Road, influenced the culture, reader/audience, and ‘story’ in the period in which the novel was published and how it continues to affect present literature. It is hypothesized that this novel, through its beat elements, gave a new perspective about culture, influenced the reader/audience by imbibing in them a yearning to be free from social conventions and experiment with new ways of living, and affected the ‘story’ in such a way that matters thought hitherto unspeakable in literature were accepted as themes and topics. It is by analyzing and comparing existing literature on the topic that this paper seeks to carry out this exercise.
Review of Literature Culture Weinreich has reminded that once beat became popular, the beat generation was not limited to poetry or literature but to everything else as well (263). The “beatniks” had become “cultural icons” (Weinreich, 264). Tamony has observed that the word ‘beat’ began to be used in “musical circles” in the same year when the ‘Bible of beat generation’, “On the Road”, was published (276). Even the legendary name, Beatles, had emerged from the concept of “beat” (Weinreich, 264). There was even “a recipe for majoun, a marijuana jam which the Beats used to high literary purpose in their Tangier outpost” (Weinreich, 265). In this manner, the authors and critics (Tamony; Weinreich) who studied the beat generation and the book, “On the Road”, have found that beat inflicted all walks of life, thereby getting absorbed into the culture and even when the movement subsided, some remnants of beat remained in the culture. Reader/Audience “On the Road” depicts types of behaviors objectionable in the view of mainstream society, like, “stealing, heavy drinking, drug use, and sexual promiscuity” as adventures that do not necessarily demand any judgment (Wagner, 43). The book was criticized as embodiment of the “moral demise of a generation” but was also overwhelmingly received by America as a literary turning point (Wagner, 41). This novel was an outcome of a cross-country trip that Jack Kerouac made along with his friend, Neal Cassady (Wagner, 39). The protagonists in the novel are seen indulging in all the objectionable behaviors mentioned above and also live a care free life drenched in music and ecstasy imparted by drug and alcohol use (Kerouac). Jack Kerouac also had his own battles to fight to cope with the problem of alcoholism (Wagner, 43). In Kerouac’ own words, the impact on the reader/audience of this beat lifestyle presented in literature and music was that: Postwar youth emerged cool and beat, had picked up the gestures and the style; soon it was everywhere, the new look.. . the bop visions became common property of the commercial, popular cultural world .... The ingestion of drugs became official (tranquilizers and the ...Show more

Summary

The beat generation has been described as “the most influential cultural and political countermovement of the 20th century America” (Wagner, 5). The possibilities of living outside the ‘normal’ life provided the beat generation writers with their ultimate exotica (Wagner, 10). …
Author : edna18
Beat Generation. On the Road Jack Kerouac essay example
Read Text Preview
Save Your Time for More Important Things
Let us write or edit the research paper on your topic
"Beat Generation. On the Road Jack Kerouac"
with a personal 20% discount.
Grab the best paper

Related Essays

The Beat Generation & The Hippie Movement
The Beat Generation & the Hippie Movement. When we talk about youth protest movements in America, the hippies and the 1960s come into our heads at once. But the fact is that the sixties witnessed only the second wave of youth revolts and student revolutions that have irrevocably changed the world.
10 pages (2500 words) Research Paper
The Writers of the Beat Generation and their Role in Rebellion and Reflection
The Beat Generation was a period in American history where writers broke through the barriers of censorship. It was American literary exponents that emerged shortly after the world war 11 in the 1950s who believed in self emancipation and liberation, experimentation of new ideas, spontaneity and breaking from the status quo.
24 pages (6000 words) Research Paper
Explore how Bob Dylan portrays transient figures in Like a Rolling Stone, and discuss how these portrayals contribute to t
The year 1965 represented a turning point and evolution in the American counter-culture movement, changing from being a minority, underground experience to becoming a mainstream, commercial event with the advent of rock’n’roll. The Beat Movement as represented by Kerouac, Ginsburg, Burroughs, and many other poets, musicians, mystics, artists, and free-thinkers was conceived in the 1950’s, existing in avant garde centers like Haight-Ashbury in San Francisco or Greenwich Village in New York.
5 pages (1250 words) Research Paper
On the road
As one man among that 38 percent, Sargeant became a hobo, living in flophouses and jungle camps off the rail yards. When he got desperate he would wander into town, commit a minor crime, and spend a few nights in jail with a roof over his head. On the occasion described by Hughes, Sargeant is beaten on the head by the police and hallucinates a conversation with Christ.
5 pages (1250 words) Research Paper
On the Road
For the same reason, Socrates had to consume hemlock long ago. Hughes’ story On the Road echoes similar sentiments. It deals with the factors like our egos and prejudices that blind us to the absolute beauty of truth, life and their worth. The story, without cynicism, mirrors the agony of the segregated and it is a contradiction that such segregation should be found rooted deeply in the culture of a nation that was ‘conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal’.
5 pages (1250 words) Research Paper
How did Chris Burden, Shakira and Jack Kerouac influence society
In the modern day context, with the assistance of technological interventions and globalization, the impact has in fact exceeded the national boundaries and are tending to influence the societies and cultures all around the world.
6 pages (1500 words) Research Paper
Jack London
“Literature uses the normal means of communication – language images, symbols, codes, stories – but uses them with more complexity and subtlety than is normal in everyday communication” (Lye, 2003).
8 pages (2000 words) Research Paper
Chris Burden, Shakira and Jack Kerouac
The paper will focus on the social influences of Chris Burden, Shakira and Jack Kerouac, who are recognized to be few of the most popular personalities, belonging to different spheres of the society. The paper will intend to provide a brief description of the three personalities with due consideration to their time and society.
6 pages (1500 words) Research Paper
Research paper based on millennial generation
They have diversified themselves from the older adults, deciphering a strong shift. Researches reveal that this particular generation has managed to set their footsteps in becoming the most knowledgeable and cultured generation in the history of the United
5 pages (1250 words) Research Paper
Get a custom paper written
by a pro under your requirements!
Win a special DISCOUNT!
Put in your e-mail and click the button with your lucky finger
Your email
YOUR PRIZE:
Apply my DISCOUNT
Comments (0)
Rate this paper:
Thank you! Your comment has been sent and will be posted after moderation