StudentShare solutions
Triangle menu

Allen Ginsberg's Howl: The Cry of Consciousness Transformed - Essay Example

Not dowloaded yet

Extract of sample
Allen Ginsberg's Howl: The Cry of Consciousness Transformed

The first three sections of the poem succeed remarkably in the tasks of "widen[ing] the area of consciousness" and in making " pragmatic examination of the texture of consciousness" and they also bravely attempt the apparently quixotic endeavor of "transform[ing] consciousness," but this third task at least is completed only in the appended fourth part of the poem, the "Footnote to Howl", which the poet appended, surely, only because he divined it was needed to fulfill the creative intention of the poem.
The first section widens the 'area of consciousness' in making the reader/audience aware of the various ways in which "the best minds of my generation" (I.1) had reacted to and been destroyed by the madness of the culture and the civilization of their time. Various commentaries on the poem, including some by the poet himself, and others by his close associates, have made clear that many of these instances are auto/biographical in nature, and have the substance of their basis in actual fact. This long section of the poem, which can be seen as a single sentence in a linguistic feat by a writer or as the prelude to a judicial sentence on modern culture by an active dissenting judge; might possibly also be a tribute (in form) to at least one predecessor poet, Walt Whitman. This section ends with the "eli eli lamma lamma sabacthani saxophone cry that shivered the cities down to the last radio / with the absolute heart of the poem of life butchered out of their own bodies good to eat a thousand years"-bringing together for pragmatic examination an undeniably consciousness-widening cluster of images, from Golgotha to Tibet to America and the contemporary world and the future of civilization.
The second section of "Howl" is a scream directed against the presiding deity of modern culture who dictated the butchery of the life and souls of the best minds of the Beat generation, "Moloch the loveless" (II. 3):
Moloch whose mind is pure machinery! Moloch whose blood is running money! Moloch whose fingers are ten armies! Moloch whose breast is a cannibal dynamo! Moloch whose ear is a smoking tomb!(II.5)
This section of the poem, inasmuch as it is a pragmatic examination of the ills and travails of modern consciousness, also widens the "area of consciousness" conflating the hated idol of the Old Testament and the curse of the New World. It is a cry for the "Visions! omens! hallucinations! miracles! Ecstasies!" drained "down the American river!" (II.12)
The third section of the poem directly addresses Carl Solomon with the refrain "I'm with you in Rockland"-"where you're madder than I am" (III.1) An examination of consciousness, this section of the poem definitely widens the area of consciousness, and even transforms consciousness, at least in its penultimate line:
I'm with you in Rockland
where we wake up electrified out of the coma by our own souls' airplanes roaring over the roof they've come to drop angelic bombs
the hospital illuminates itself imaginary walls collapse O skinny
legions run outside O starry-spangled shock of mercy the eternal
war is here O victory forget your underwear we're free (III.18)
"Howl" thus ends in a transformation of conscious ...Show more

Summary

In his introductory "Apologia of Selection" to Selected Poems 1947-1995, Allen Ginsberg notes that the "original task was to 'widen the area of consciousness,' make pragmatic examination of the texture of consciousness, even somewhat transform consciousness"(xix) [emphasis added]…
Author : lhuels
Allen Ginsbergs Howl: The Cry of Consciousness Transformed essay example
Read Text Preview
Save Your Time for More Important Things
Let us write or edit the essay on your topic
"Allen Ginsberg's Howl: The Cry of Consciousness Transformed"
with a personal 20% discount.
Grab the best paper

Related Essays

Function of Profanity in Allen Ginsberg's Howl
The language in Allen Ginsberg’s Howl can, at times, be strong. However, there is not so much profanity as there exists manifold references of fornication, illicit usage of controlled substances, and music—otherwise known as “sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll,” to name the coined turn of phrase so often used in order to explain the hurrah that comes with fame, but can be experienced by the common man just as well.
2 pages (500 words) Essay
Look at Ginsberg's Howl. How would you characterize the world that Ginsberg describes Is he being accurate or is he using hyp
The three part poem “Howl” by Alan Ginsberg describes a nightmarish world of madness, drinking, drugs and weird religious imagery. He seems to be describing the kind of lifestyle that drop-outs and hippies experimented with in the 1950s as a reaction to conservative American lifestyles.
1 pages (250 words) Essay
Whitman's Song of Myself and Ginsberg's Howl

It is evidently clear from the discussion that both the poets have exhibited limited similarity when it comes to the use of line, as Whitman’s lines connect to the outer sphere, while Ginsberg’s lines are inward. The self of Whitman is all-encompassing but Ginsberg’s self is passive, lacking diversity by excluding rural settings.

4 pages (1000 words) Essay
Howl by Allen Ginsberg
The poem is a prominent paradigm of free verse style in catalogue technique, which uses diverse rhythmic patterns according to its requirement, in which readers can find ample criticism on the social system prevailed in 1940-50.
4 pages (1000 words) Essay
Consciousness
This was unsettling because our relationship to the world is determined by our knowledge of it: not being able to know anything has disastrous implications for our ability to act. Altered states of consciousness: for example dreams and trances and the consciousness of children or the insane: are disturbing because 1) these forms of consciousness arise from the same physical reality as more normal consciousness; and 2) they form an alternative construct wherein to understand physical reality.
5 pages (1250 words) Essay
Function of Profanity in Allen Ginsberg's Howl
The language in Allen Ginsberg’s Howl can, at times, be strong. However, there is not so much profanity as there exists manifold references of fornication,
2 pages (500 words) Essay
Compare and contrast the movie and poem Howl
this time, the Beatnik era was prevalent and the Beats reveled in poetry, music, art and fiction and read their creative works to enthusiastic listeners, thereby creating a legend of themselves. The film ‘Howl’ is based on the poem ‘Howl’ by Ginsberg, but is set in the
4 pages (1000 words) Essay
Consciousness
Recently it has been studied that consciousness continues even when the brain stops working. We continue to experience consciousness 3 minutes after death while the brain is long dead. When
3 pages (750 words) Essay
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