"I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked, dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix, angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night, who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities..." - Allen Ginsberg, "Howl"
Who were the original hipsters? In this dazzling collection, Glenn O’Brien provides a kaleidoscopic guided tour through the margins and subterranean tribes of mid-twentieth century America—the worlds of jazz, of disaffected postwar youth, of those alienated by racial and sexual exclusion, of outlaws and drug users creating their own dissident networks.
Fifty years ago, Norman Mailer asserted, "William Burroughs is the only American novelist living today who may conceivably be possessed by genius." Few since have taken such literary risks, developed such individual political or spiritual ideas, or spanned such a wide range of media. Learn More
'Big Sur's humane, precise account of the extraordinary ravages of alcohol delirium tremens on Kerouac, a superior novelist who had strength to complete his poetic narrative, a task few scribes so afflicted have accomplished - others crack up.' Learn More
In The Beats: A Graphic History, those who were mad to live come back to life through artwork as pulsatingly vibrant as the movement itself. Told by Harvey Pekar and his frequent artistic collaborator Ed Piskor, and by a range of artists and writers, including feminist comic creator Trina Robbins and MAD Magazine artist Peter Kuper, The Beats takes us on a wild tour. Learn More