Allen Ginsberg

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Ginsberg, Allen

(gĭnz`bûrg), 1926–97, American poet, b. Paterson, N.J., grad. Columbia, 1949. An outspoken member of the beat generationbeat generation,
term applied to certain American artists and writers who were popular during the 1950s. Essentially anarchic, members of the beat generation rejected traditional social and artistic forms.
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, Ginsberg is best known for Howl (1956), a long poem attacking American values in the 1950s. The prose of Jack KerouacKerouac, Jack
(John Kerouac) , 1922–69, American novelist, b. Lowell, Mass., studied at Columbia. One of the leaders of the beat generation, a term he is said to have coined, he was the author of the largely autobiographical novel On the Road
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, the insights of Zen BuddhismZen Buddhism,
Buddhist sect of China and Japan. The name of the sect (Chin. Ch'an, Jap. Zen) derives from the Sanskrit dhyana [meditation]. In China the school early became known for making its central tenet the practice of meditation, rather than adherence
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, and the free verse of Walt WhitmanWhitman, Walt
(Walter Whitman), 1819–92, American poet, b. West Hills, N.Y. Considered by many to be the greatest of all American poets, Walt Whitman celebrated the freedom and dignity of the individual and sang the praises of democracy and the brotherhood of man.
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 were some of the sources for Ginsberg's quest to glorify everyday experience, embrace the ecstatic moment, and promote sponteneity and freedom of expression. His volumes of poetry include Kaddish and Other Poems, 1958–60 (1961), Collected Poems, 1947–1980 (1984), and White Shroud: Poems 1980–85 (1986). His Collected Poems: 1947–1997 was published in 2006. Allen Verbatim (1974) is a collection of lectures, and Deliberate Prose (2000) a selection of essays.


See his The Best Minds of My Generation: A Literary History of the Beats (2017, compiled and ed. by B. Morgan); his journals (5 vol., 1971–96); collected correspondence (5 vol., 1976–2001), M. Schumacher, ed., Family Business: Selected Letters between a Father and Son (2001), B. Morgan, ed., The Letters of Allen Ginsberg (2008) and The Selected Letters of Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder (2008), and B. Morgan and D. Stanford, ed., Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg: The Letters (2010); D. Carter, ed., Spontaneous Mind: Selected Interviews, 1958–1996 (2001); S. Greenough, Beat Memories: The Photographs of Allen Ginsberg (2010, museum catalog); biographies by B. Miles (1989), M. Schumacher (1992), and B. Morgan (2006); studies by L. Hyde, ed. (1984), T. F. Merrill (1988), B. Miles (1993), and B. Morgan (2010); bibliographies ed. by G. Dowden (1971), M. P. Kraus (1980), and B. Morgan (1995).

Ginsberg, Allen

(1926–  ) poet; born in Newark, N.J. After studying at Columbia University (B.A. 1948), he held numerous jobs, traveled widely, lived in the Far East (1962–63), but resided mainly in New York City. He was personally associated with Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs, and others in founding the Beat movement in New York and San Francisco (1950s and 1960s); his best known work was published in Howl and Other Poems (1956). In 1971 he became a director of the Committee on Poetry Foundation, N.Y., and the Kerouac School of Poetics, Colo. In later years he assumed the mantle of a gentle guru through his many lectures and as a practitioner of Eastern meditation.
References in periodicals archive ?
In the 1980s, still very much at the forefront of attention, we meet Allen Ginsberg, elder statesman, co-founder (with Anne Waldman) of the Jack Kerouac Poetry School at the Naropa Institute, professor at Brooklyn College, honored by the poetry establishment that once spurned him.
Since then it has played host to world-renowned names such as Beat poet Allen Ginsberg, future poet laureate Ted Hughes, television presenter Melvyn Bragg and future Nobel Prize-winner the Irish playwright Seamus Heaney.
Last Words gives us entries from November 1996 to August 1997, helpfully contextualized by James Grauerholz's introduction, which stresses the recent deaths of Burroughs's friends Herbert Huncke, Terry Southern, Allen Ginsberg, and Timothy Leary.
The Life and Times of Allen Ginsberg," "Kerouac," et al), feature is strictly a freshman 101 course.
With Ex-Friends Podhoretz has re-told the Family story in the odd and provocative form of five mesmerizing, densely interconnected narratives of his feuds with prominent people who were either Family members or figures on the periphery: Allen Ginsberg, Lionel and Diana Trilling, Lillian Hellman, Hannah Arendt, and Norman Mailer.
REAL * Ginsberg FAME* Potter WRITERS J Dane DeHaan as Lucien Carr and Radcliffe as Allen Ginsberg PALS* Dane and Daniel
ALLEN Ginsberg may have been a great poet for only a few years in the late 50's and early 60's, but he was a remarkable and important public figure for his entire adult life.
Hugo Ball, who had passed through Kandinsky's Munich, especially caught my eye with his Magical Bishop performance and Futurist sound poems that broke the language apart, and this connection was, incidentally, made stronger for me by that footloose proto-postmodernist William Burroughs, who was in the foothills of the Putumayo in the mid-'50s drinking yage with shamans and writing letters about his experience to Allen Ginsberg.
For instance, citing Dharma Lion, Michael Schumacher's 1992 biography of Allen Ginsberg, Jonnes charges the Beat poet, a proponent of cannabis legalization, with "utter hypocrisy" for banning all drugs (including alcohol) at his farm to protect his companion, Peter Orlovsky.
Like Allen Ginsberg, she is not afraid to let it all hang out and to celebrate "the holy act of sex" in great personal detail.