American History / Beat” in “On the Road”

American History / Beat” in “On the Road”

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The “Beat” in “On the Road”

Beat generation was a group of poets and novelist whose work reconnoitered and influenced the American culture in the period after the World War II. The work of the authors from the Beat Generation was common in the 1950s as its popularity grew in the era. Jack Kerouac is one of the renowned Beat Generation writers whose life and works makes him a central figure of the Beat Generation. The term Beat Generation originated from Jack Kerouac as he used it to characterize the undergraduate anti-conforming youth movement in New York. From the Kerouac’s novel ‘On the Road’, it is crucial to determine whether it portrays some elements of the Beat Culture.

The elements represented in the Beat Culture is one of the key items that distinguish them from the other authors (GRAMMATICAL ERROR). The novels and poem from the writers questioned the rampant materialism as most of the perpetrators saw capitalism as destructive to the human race and a stumbling block to the development of the society. The Beat Generation works were subject to questioning as they embraced most issues that the society regarded to as taboos including an open discussion about sexuality as well as advocating for sexual freedom and experimentation. Nevertheless, the beat generation culture also had elements of the testing as well as the use of drugs as well as alcohol. The literature from the Beat Generation authors was more audacious, straightforward as well as expressive as compared to the presiding publications. Additionally, the work of the Beat writers included exploration of American and Eastern Culture and Religion as well as embracing music style especially jazz in their novels and poems. In Jack Kerouac’s novel ‘On the Road’, most of the elements in the beats culture is evident in the publication.

In the novel, ‘On the Road’, Jack Kerouac questions materialism as well as the shares his discontent of capitalism through the characters of the novel. Sal at most times spends all of his money on alcohol and parties not only to his friends but also to the strangers he met during his travels. At Cheyenne, Sal spends all of his money with Montana Slim and Mississippi Gene despite meeting them on the vehicle. Even though Sal spends all of his money, we (DO NOT USE “I,WE, YOU” IN THIS PAPER. USE “READERS” INSTEAD) find Sal can travel through other people. The scenario clearly represents elements of socialism more than capitalism hence concluding the book ‘On the Road’ is skeptical of capitalism and materialism.

Additionally, the Jack Kerouac also discusses pliably sexuality as well promotes sexual liberty and tests. The book shows many instances especially through Dean and Sal on sexuality as well as sexual freedom and experimentation. The book shows Dean being in a relationship with two ladies simultaneously, as he expresses his desire of keeping them both Marylou and Camille (Kerouac, pg.42). As the story precedes (WHAT DOES THIS WORD MEAN? I DON’T LIKE IT), we find Dean meeting Inez resulting to him leaving Camille despite her being expectant of his second child (Kerouac, pg. 262). Moreover, during the parties that Sal attends, there are various cases that Sal hits at girls and prostitutes. In Gregoria Mexico, Sal went to bed with an older prostitute where they danced and drank (Kerouac, pg. 293). At San Francisco, Sal tried to seduce women but failed. The above instances clearly exhibit how the novel ‘On the Road’ was open on issues pertaining sexuality and sexual freedom as well as experimentation.

Furthermore, Kerouac also incorporated drug abuse and experimentation in the novel of ‘On the Road’. Through Sal and Dean, we (DO NOT USE THIS WORD) trace numerous occasions where we find the use of drugs as well as drinking of alcohol. As Sal travels to Los Angeles on a flat-board truck, he meets Montana Slim and Mississippi Gene, who they buy cigarettes and a bottle of whiskey and drink as they travel till they arrive at Cheyenne(Kerouac, pg. 25). At Cheyenne, Sal and Montana Slim hop?from one bar to another drinking until Sal uses his last two dollars. Additionally, through Dean there are many instances that wefind alcoholism as well as the use of other drugs. In part II, Dean and Sal went to Birdland attend the concert of George Shearing, a blind jazz pianist (Kerouac, pg. 127). At the concert, Dean and Sal drink alcohol as well as smoke marijuana that makes them confused and awed.

The exploration of American and Eastern culture and religion, as well as the embracing of jazz musical genre, is well revealed in the book ‘On the Road.’ The book is based on Sal travels in the West as he had fancied that as his lifetime dream. As he traveled, Sal interacted with different cultures and religion. When Sal decided to go back east via Los Angeles and Texas, he met with a Mexican girl, Terry, as he was walking through Oakland. Through Terry, Sal interacted with the Mexicans as he admired their culture of working in farms as well as the roles performed by the husbands in a family (Kerouac, pg. 92). Dean aired his concerns about religion as he criticized Sal beliefs in God. There are some instances where the elements of Jazz is evident in the book. At Birdland, Sal and Dean attend George Shearing jazz concert that they become thrilled and passionate for the performance (Kerouac, pg. 127). Furthermore, at Chicago Sal and Dean go to jazz clubs where they listened at the music night long as Sal describes the history of jazz and their musicians (Kerouac, pg.178).

Jack Kerouac wrote the novel ‘On the Road’ in a unique manner, brave, upfront and more open way than the previous publications. The book is of characters which makes it more than plot, with a combination of moods and places, visualizations described, as well as the constant movement of the characters. The novel is based on Dean Moriarty whose behavior made him the hero of the book. The book describes the life of Sal before Dean and his life after Dean came into the picture. Before Sal met Dean, we find his life being depressing, tiresome and stagnant as he was recovering from a divorce with his wife. Dean’s arrival sparked Sal’s life, as he started following his dream of traveling west where his life became wild, open and free. The book is written as a first-person narrative with Kerouac bringing out his ideas openly through the characters without the fear that no other author had tried the method before.

From the novel ‘On the Road’, it is evident that it followed the Beat Culture. Jack Kerouac included the key elements that were depicted by the Beat Generation authors. The issues include the questioning of materialism and disregarding of capitalism as well as the promotion of sexual liberty and experimentation. Moreover, Kerouac also incorporated drug abuse and experimentation and exploration of the American and Eastern Culture and Religion as well as elements of music, especially jazz. Lastly, Jack Kerouac developed the book in an exclusive manner that separates his work from the prior authors as he captivates his readers through daring, blunt, and open method. Therefore, it is evident that Jack Kerouac established the style and genre of the Beat Generation through his book ‘On the Road.’

 

Work Cited

Kerouac, Jack. On the Road. New York, N.Y: Viking, 2007. Print.

  • I DID CLEARLY NOTE THAT USE THE PAST FORM IN THIS ESSAY. PLEASE FIX IT (YOU HAVE TO GO THROUGH ALL THE PAPER, HIGHLIGHTED WORDS ARE JUST EXPAMPLES, I HAVE NOT HIGHLIGHTED WHOLE THINGS YET. PLEASE CHECK CAREFULLY).
  • I WANT THE PAPER EXACT 4 PAGES (Actually, not me, it’s my teacher who wants it)
  • THE LAST 3 PARAGRAPHS I HAVE NOT CHECKED YET, BUT YOU HAVE TO CHECK THE PAST FORM.
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