The Best Minds of My Generation: A Literary History of the Beats
A Literary History of the Beats
Published for the first time, a seminal series of lectures on Beat history given by Ginsberg himself
Selling and Marketing Points
Necessary reading for anyone interested in Beat history, A Literary History of the Beat Generation is the only collection of Ginsberg's lectures, which were given at Naropa Institute for the first time in 1977, and later at Brooklyn College. This is an ideal resource for students and academics, as well as fans of Beat writing.
Refreshingly unacademic, the lectures are personal and digressive - Ginsberg shares anecdotes of meeting Kerouac and Burroughs and other writers for the first time, explains his own poetics, elucidates the importance of music to Beat writing, discusses visual influences and the cut-up method, and paints a portrait of a group who were leading a literary revolution.
The lectures contain passages from many literary works by Beat writers together with Ginsberg's exegesis. As such, the book functions as an introduction to many key Beat texts.
The book is edited by Ginsberg specialist Bill Morgan, who worked extensively with Ginsberg in his archives.
This edition is introduced by renowned poet Anne Waldman, whom Ginsberg has called his "spiritual wife." Waldman was cofounder, with Ginsberg, of the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics.
Grove is bolstering its backlist Ginsberg titles, including Wait Till I'm Dead, Indian Journals, and Journals: Early Fifties, Early Sixties.
Allen Ginsberg (1926-1997) was a poet, activist, and one of the Beat Generation's most renowned writers. He was a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and co-founder of the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa Institute. He won the National Book Award for Poetry and his groundbreaking poem
Howl is one of the most widely read and translated poems of the century.
Bill Morgan has written and edited thirty-nine books, including
I Celebrate Myself: The Somewhat Private Life of Allen Ginsberg.
Anne Waldman is an internationally acclaimed poet, scholar, and activist. She is the author of more than 40 books, including
Fast Speaking Woman,
Vow to Poetry, and
Helping the Dreamer. She is a recipient of the American Book Award's Lifetime Achievement and the Poetry Society of America's Shelley Memorial Award. She divides her time between New York City and Boulder, Colorado.