Pranksters And Intersubjectivity The Concept Of Intersubjectivity Essay


Pranksters and Intersubjectivity The Concept of Intersubjectivity in the Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test

Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters were led by a kind of nouveau-culture that had sprung out of the Beat movement like Athena out of the head of Zeus when struck by a hammer. The hammer that struck the Beat poets, of course, was LSD -- better known as acid -- an integral (and legal) ingredient in the search for intersubjectivity. Tom Wolfe's The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test is a chronicle of the Pranksters' attempt at intersubjective transcendence -- the melding of all minds into one, through drug-induced states. Wolfe's narrative style is an attempt to put into words the exact experience of the Pranksters' intersubjectivity -- yet, Wolfe, himself a master stylist and satirist, uses the narrative not only to chronicle but also to expose the absurdity at the core of the "transcendent" effort of this infamous group of "hippies." This paper...


Kesey had previously experienced this sort of phenomenon -- for example, when one member of the group rose to open a window across the room someone nearer would get up and do it first. Intersubjectivity was the explanation for such happenings -- and it was also an excuse to take lots of drugs.
Wolfe is perfectly aware of the culture and its ideology, and he sets to mimicking it in his punctuation-less paragraphs and frenzied descriptions that build and build into a stoner's climax that hilariously reveals itself to be -- not a climax -- but an anti-epiphany anti-climax: CLOUD. The fact that the Pranksters are stoned out…

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