The Beats: A Graphic History

The Beats: A Graphic History
by Harvey Pekar (Author), Paul Buhle (Author), Ed Piskor (Illustrator)

ISBN: 9780809016495

I was never taken by the Beats as a lot of kids seem to be. As a result I had a bit of a gap in my knowledge about the movement and the artist associated with it. The Beats provided a good overview of the movement for those who know nothing about it and may offer new facts for more seasoned Beat aficionados.

Harvey Pekar is the perfect biographer for Kerouac, Burroughs and Ginsburg. He gives a frank accounting of these author’s lives and works which makes it easy to see the Beats as very real individuals and not idealized free spirits on the great American journey.

I was pleasantly surprised to find half of the book dedicated to the “lesser” Beats like Philip Whalen, Slim Brundage and Diane Di Prima. The book also gives perspectives on the movement as a whole, including feminist commentary and the Beat movement in jazz and the visual arts.


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