Jack Kerouac's hand-drawn cover for On the Road

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13 Responses to “Jack Kerouac's hand-drawn cover for On the Road”

  1. porkbarrel says:

    Wow, just as sloppy and repetitive as his prose. Who’dathunkit?

  2. jphilby says:

    “But Kerouac was also tortured, death obsessed, an alcoholic who withdrew, during his last decade, into a bitter, self-contained universe….”

    If you want to understand that, study the period CLOSE to understand what happened to Kerouac. Skip the art pictures and TV shows. Anybody who tries to understand him, or Burroughs or Ginsberg, without knowing what those times were like, will fail.

    The 50s were a steaming pile. The rancid, bored, desperate 50s “smelled terrible: boozy, tinged with sweat and urine.” Why the fuck you think they wrote what they did? Bukowski wasn’t inventing, he was *describing*.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Even re-reading Doors of Perception by Aldous Huxley gives you the sense that the McCarthy-slasch-HUAC era was screaming for a change of subject.

  4. Anonymous says:

    And why he signed it JOHN Kerouac?

  5. Anonymous says:

    | If you want to understand that, study the period
    | CLOSE to understand what happened to Kerouac. Skip
    | the art pictures and TV shows. Anybody who tries
    | to understand him, or Burroughs or Ginsberg,
    | without knowing what those times were like, will
    | fail.

    Or, follow his path today. It is easier to understand by comparison, avoiding the pervertion of the thought at the same time… (not recomended)

  6. aileinduinn says:

    Allegedly, his birth name was Jean Jacques-Louis Lebris De Kerouac, “Jack” was a relatively late nom-de-plume.

  7. huracán says:

    By JOHN Kerouac?

  8. Shrdlu says:

    I’ve read most of this stuff, and even attended a speech by Ginsberg. I’m left with the feeling there was nothing to understand.

    As for Kerouac, the artists he tried to emulate like Céline and Charlie Parker (think improvisation) were worlds beyond him. He knew enough to be infatuated with great artists, but never really synthesized some great literary voice, as he thought. I think he simply didn’t have the intellect. Perhaps it was all the “tea” he smoked.

    In the end, he was just a French-Canadian from Lowell, MA who went to Columbia on the G.I. Bill and fell in with some pretty funky people. Had his literary attempts ended up moldering in his mother’s attic amongst vapors of ragout de boulette, the world would be no more the worse off–but then again, we wouldn’t have that Snack Attack song from Godley and Creme, and that would be a shame.

  9. Anonymous says:

    To SHRDLU:

    I think that he just dug everything and was fascinated with life and death and didn’t try to understand the things that we all waste our lives trying to understand, but instead just lived life digging all that he could.

  10. Dale Cruse says:

    That needs to be widely released for us completists.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Can’t get into Kerouac? Sloppy, repetitive? I am grateful to the gods that I live on a higher plain of understanding. Kerouac is the most important American writer since Twain. His creativity is unsurpassed.Obviously, you don’t know “jack”.

  12. Shrdlu says:

    Who can get that into Kerouac? Not the best novel I ever read–in fact it’ so bad, reading On The Road can be hazardous to your health. (He, he.)

    For reasons I cannot recall, I do have the original Rhino Records Kerouac Collection boxed set if anyone is interested. Very attractive packaging, never been played.

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