20 Facts About Beat Generation


Beat Generation was a literary movement started by a group of authors whose work explored and influenced American culture and politics in the post-war era.

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The members of the Beat Generation developed a reputation as new bohemian hedonists, who celebrated non-conformity and spontaneous creativity.

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Origins of the Beat Generation can be traced to Columbia University and the meeting of Kerouac, Ginsberg, Carr, Hal Chase and others.

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Beat Generation was given the option to plead insanity to avoid a jail term, and was committed for 90 days to Bellevue Hospital, where he met Carl Solomon.

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Beat Generation fell in love with Peter Orlovsky at the end of 1954 and began writing Howl.

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Beat Generation waited, then dumped the body in the Hudson River, later seeking advice from Burroughs, who suggested he turn himself in.

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Beat Generation then went to Kerouac, who helped him dispose of the weapon.

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Beat Generation wrote a collaboration novel with Burroughs, And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks, concerning the murder.

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Beat Generation titled it Off the Road, and it was published in 1990.

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That is, until the assassination of the Civil Rights leader, Malcolm X During this time, LeRoi Jones branched off from the other Beat writers, including his wife, to find his identity among the African-American and Islamic communities.

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Some Beat Generation writers were openly gay or bisexual, including two of the most prominent.

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Original members of the Beat Generation used a number of different drugs, including alcohol, marijuana, benzedrine, morphine, and later psychedelic drugs such as peyote, Ayahuasca, and LSD.

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Writers of the Beat Generation were heavily influenced by Jazz artists like Billie Holiday and the stories told through Jazz music.

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Second-generation Beat Ted Joans was named "the only Afro-American Surrealist" by Breton.

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The Beatles spelled their name with an "a" partly as a Beat Generation reference, and John Lennon was a fan of Jack Kerouac.

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Singer-songwriter Tom Waits, a Beat Generation fan, wrote "Jack and Neal" about Kerouac and Cassady, and recorded "On the Road" with Primus.

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Beat Generation later collaborated with Burroughs on the theatrical work The Black Rider.

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Musician Mark Sandman, who was the bass guitarist, lead vocalist and a former member of the alternative jazz rock band Morphine, was interested in the Beat Generation and wrote a song called "Kerouac" as a tribute to Jack Kerouac and his personal philosophy and way of life.

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Beat Generation was met with scrutiny and assigned many stereotypes.

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Beat Generation's 1958 Partisan Review article "The Know-Nothing Bohemians" was a vehement critique primarily of Kerouac's On the Road and The Subterraneans, as well as Ginsberg's Howl.

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