GALLERY | SITE
This is where I'll be providing
general information on various Beat topics. This will be an ever-expanding
section of The Beat Page as more information and new topics are
introduced and developed. If you have an idea for the Info area
of the Beat Page, feel free to submit requests
Where does the word "Beat"
The word "Beat" originally
derived from circus and carnival argot, reflecting the straitened
circumstanced of nomadic carnies. In the drug world, "beat"
meant "robbed" or "cheated" (as in a "beat"
deal). Herbert Huncke picked up the word from his show business
friends on the Near North Side of Chicago, and in the fall of
1945 he introduced the word to William
Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg
and Jack Kerouac. He never
intended it to be elevating, but the opposite: "I meant
beaten. The world against me." ( more
Buddhism and the Beats
Buddhism, the ancient and highly
philosophical Asian tradition, was the religion of the Beats.
It began to influence the lives of the major New York Beat writers
in the mid-1950's, when Jack
Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg
each began delving into it, unaware at first that the other was
doing so as well. Kerouac
and Ginsberg began their
studies by reading books in libraries, but when they migrated
to California they began integrating the religion into their
lives, inspired by Gary Snyder
(the Beat writer most consistently identified with Buddhism)
and Kenneth Rexroth. (
more ... )
The Beats on Film
There have been several films/documentaries made about the Beats
and the Beat Generation. I've included some of the most notable
ones here along with links to additional information. Some information
was researched on the Internet Movie Database. Links to IMDB
and other external pages will launch within a new browser window.
( more ... )
Love Lion - Michael McClure and
More than 40 years
after his Beat days, Michael McClure is still making roads
for American poets - this time with "Love Lion," a
70-minute performance video of his poems backed by the piano
of Ray Manzarek who, with Jim Morrison,
founded the rock band The Doors. "Love Lion," issued
by Mystic Fire Video in conjunction with Island Visual Arts,
was recorded at the Bottom Line rock club in Greenwich Village. ( more
Who Was Lucien Carr?
I've received a few inquiries about
Lucien Carr since the release of Gary Walkow's docu-drama about
the life of William S. Burroughs
and Joan Vollmer, played by Keifer Sutherland and Courtney Love,
respectively. The independent film premiered at the USA Film
Festival in Dallas, Texas this year. What does this have to do
with Lucien Carr, you ask? The film begins in New York City on
the night Lucien Carr murders David Kammerer. ( more
A Cultural Chronology of Early
Beat Generation Literature 1944-1960
- World War II is going on throughout
Europe and Phillippines; D-Day landing of U.S. and allied troops
at Normandy; United Nations is established; D.H. Lawrence's Lady
Chatterly's Lover found obscene in U.S.
Rexroth engineers Berkeley
Renaissance with William Everson, Philip Lamantia, Robert Duncan...
Circle magazine around West Coast Anarchist and Libertarian
Circles around Berkeley.
( more ... )