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The Buddhist practice of "just sitting" while in meditation also emerges in Ginsberg's poem when he writes, "I sit in my house for days on end and stare at the roses in the closet."
The narrator also likens himself to Buddha by saying, "You made me want to be a saint." The Buddha abnegated his wealth to pursue a path of total transcendence. Dissatisfied with asceticism, however, the Buddha pursued a middle path. The narrator in Ginsberg's "America" admits "I smoke marijuana every chance I get." Antithetical to formal Buddhism, which denounces mind-altering substances, the assertion nevertheless echoes the idea that total abstinence is not the spiritual goal. Honesty and respect for human life, on the other hand, are the goals of spiritual practice.
Thus, Buddhism is like communism in their mutually egalitarian philosophies. Both Buddhism and Buddhism affirm similar social values. "No political system, no matter how ideal it…… [Read More]
This reading also featured Ginsberg's "Howl."
Along with the rest of the world, the attendees at the reading also provided wide acclaim to this particular work. Indeed, the poem was seen as groundbreaking in the struggle against the destructive American powers that be at the time. Indicative of this is the fact that Howl and Other Poems was banned for obscenity shortly after its publication. Despite this, the work was translated into more than twenty-two languages, and became one of the most widely read poems during the 20th century.
Ginsberg furthermore showed his allegiance to the Beat movement by being involved in protests against the Vietnam War, as well as other political activities and speaking opportunities, as mentioned above. The most important issues for the poet included free speech and gay rights.
For his work in both politics and poetry, Ginsberg received the Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres (the…… [Read More]
hen he left home for Columbia in 1943, he remembered his past and was happy to leave his problems -- his mother's insanity especially -- behind him. Later, he noted that he had lost quite a bit by distancing himself from her. He wrote that he lost the ability to become close to "later friendly girls" (35). He believed that he had denied his feelings toward women out of fear of what happened to his mother (35). However, he was on a path to become a lawyer, although this path would change his sophomore year when he changed his major to English literature (35).
At the end of his second term at Columbia, Allen met Lucien Carr, who thought Ginsberg to be, a "shy little Jewish boy" (Morgan 37). Paul Roth had left for the war and Lucien became Allen's first serious "crush" (37). They two built a strong friendship…… [Read More]
Not long after meeting Carr, Ginsberg wrote to his brother and said, "I plan to go down to Greenwich Village with a friend of mine who claims to be an intellectual, and knows queer and interesting people. I plan to get drunk, if I can" (Hyde, 89).
It was while Ginsberg was attending Columbia University that he realized, for the first time as an adult, his sexual orientation as a homosexual. In a letter to his brother Eugene, Allen stated that he had "accumulated a modest number of close friends, some neurotic, some insane, some political." He placed these friends in categories of social standing -- "the madmen and artists from Greenwich Village and Columbia," such as Kerouac and Carr; the "sensitive youths and young intellectuals," mostly composed of his "normal" classmates at school, and lastly, a group of other classmates whom he had daily contact with, such as his…… [Read More]
Allen Ginsberg Howl
Alen Ginsberg lived a colorful life in which he participated in many of the contemporary periods subcultures. He believed that the United States had evolved into something of a materialistic society that demanded conformity and submission to cultural norms. The radicals that resisted the mainstream culture were what Ginsberg referred to as the "best minds" and they were fallen heroes in his view. The group experimented with drugs, sex, Eastern religions, anti-consumerism, and a general opposition to any kind of expression through materialism.
The poem Howl uses intense symbolism, imagery and word play throughout. The central theme of the poem seems to incorporate madness. The best minds that he envisioned were considered mad and only allowed to move freely at night. He uses a lot of variations of words to describe various aspect of the underground society that he relates to. The addicts chase a "fix"…… [Read More]
Whitman in the Supermarket
Considered by many to be the father of free verse, Walt Whitman was a19th century American poet, essayist, and journalist. In his poetry, Whitman often incorporated aspects of realism -- presenting things as they are -- with transcendentalism, which seeks to transcend things as they are.
In Allen Ginsberg's poem, "A Supermarket in California," Ginsberg encounters "Wives in the/avocados, babies in the tomatoes!" And "Walt Whitman, childless, lonely old grubber,/poking among the meats in the refrigerator and eyeing the grocery/boys" (7-8, 10-12). Whitman was also an open bisexual who never married, never had children, and was one of the first American poets to incorporate homosexual eroticism into his work, though he is most famous for his semi-tragic depiction of American ideals -- just as Ginsberg himself is. In "A Supermarket in California," Ginsberg not only encounters Whitman but actually follows him, which is symbolic of Ginsberg's…… [Read More]
"Howl" and "Guernica" Outline
The paper demonstrates the ways in which both pieces of art contemplate and express multiple themes, including those of religion, morality, happiness, life-affirmation, and freedom.
"Howl" is a poem that is both a mourning and a celebration of life.
"Guernica" is an expression of pain and war.
oth works of art have many themes and many of the same themes.
Ginserb, the 1950s, and "Howl"
He composed the poem in the middle of the 1950s, one of the greatest decades in history for mainstream America.
He is heavily influenced by previous poets and by his own lived experiences.
Howl" shows readers how they can be connected to spirituality, religion, and what is sarcred or holy with, and without the use of the formal church.
Poetry is another form of storytelling that is best when read/performed aloud.
Howling, Expression, and Jazz
A. If we are howling,…… [Read More]
beat generation are several strong principles, the most notable is associated with the founder, Jack Kerouac and his definition of the generation as a whole.
The road" has been a powerful metaphor for freedom from the constraints of ordinary life, ever since Jack Kerouac's On the Road became the Beatnik Bible in the 1950's. Kerouac saw beauty in gas stations and freedom on the road. The metaphor caught the imagination of a generation. Many of the key phenomena of "the Sixties" developed in coherence with this metaphor... getting high on psychedelic drugs was called "taking a trip."
Jack Kerouac and others developed through his mostly autobiographical works the "positive" concept or purpose of the retaliatory generation of the beats.
ithin the works of the small elite group of writers associated with the beat generation there are many messages about, life, the world and rejection of conformity. There is little doubt…… [Read More]
For me, that afternoon was like a raid siren in the dead of the night as I could see Allen Ginsberg's poetry come to life in front of my eyes; also, I am positive that afternoon changed my perception not only of poetry, but of art in general. I became interested in the life of the artist, and the period of time a particular piece of art was created.
I can now look back and attempt to accurately evaluate the impact of Ginsberg's work on my life. Nonetheless, I am not sure how objective I can be in this assessment. Since Ginsberg has become an integrated part of my system of thought and belief, it is quite difficult to separate myself from what I believe in, and evaluate my own mind. What I can say though is that thanks to his poetry, I was able to get a more profound…… [Read More]
AUDRE: I still say I'm the only one who even comes close to understanding the struggle Obama has gone through, even though he is a man
ALLEN: And heterosexual
ADRIENNE: And alive
WILLIAM: Let's just take a step back and look at this objectively. Scientifically. Medically.
AUDRE: I think you've got the wrong hat on, doc. Figuratively speaking.
ALLEN: No, no, this could help. William, you want to right it because your sense of rhythm is uniquely American, right?
WILLIAM: Well, more or less -- m rhythm is the unique American rhythm, I would say
ALLEN: OK, buut close enough. And Adrienne, you think that because you're alive
ADRIENNE: And for other reasons, like, uhh...subjectivity, and er
ALLEN: Right. And Audre
AUDRE: The subjugation of this society which has made me an outcast in every
ALLEN: Yeah, yeah we know. Those are all some pretty valid reasons. As for me,…… [Read More]
works of art speak to different people in different ways. Explore and explain which performances and which ideas from the course that you have seen and heard this semester have "spoken" with most impact…how and why?
Works that Speak to Me
The quote by poet Allen Ginsberg made a big impact on me. He says, "Whoever controls the language, the images, controls the race." (Maser 180). This means a lot to me because I am international student from Korea. I am trying to understand a new culture through its theater. Theater to me is like breath of fresh air when visiting other country like the United States because it gives culture and meaning to the world within it. The theater is a place where "language, images" are shown.
Everything on the stage has a meaning. It is there for reason. It serves a purpose. The lighting is put upon others…… [Read More]
Perotin's "Viderunt Omnes"
My fascination with Perotin's "Viderunt Omnes" -- the aspect of the piece which intrigued me enough to select it for this exercise -- begins and ends with one name -- not that of Perotinus Magnus (as you might suspect) but that of contemporary composer Steve Reich.[footnoteRef:0] My own interest in musical analysis very often involves the question of what composers are doing now. If we approach the aesthetics of music from a perspective that is informed by Harold Bloom's approach to the aesthetics of literature, a critical approach that has been exemplified by (for example) John Fallas suggesting that the creation of Schoenberg's Serial Technique was a sort of Modernist revolutionary break with past aesthetics[footnoteRef:1], on the order of Bloom's description of the invention of "Romanticism" in literature, whereby we analyze any composer by means of his sense of "the burden of the past" and his own…… [Read More]
His own work was also published in a wide variety of literary magazines several of which were prestigious and nationally respected. His publication and involvement in publishing impressive accomplishments for an African-American man in the United States in the 1960's (Woodward, 1999).
In 1957 he moved to Greenwich Village in New York and became interested in both in jazz and the Beat Movement. he following year he began the otem Press (I have seen this referenced as Yugen).
he Beat Generation -- later just "he Beats" or the beatniks -- were a collection of writers centered first in New York and later in San Francisco. While there was a great deal of variation among the artists, they were joined to each other by a common rejection of mainstream American culture and some dabbling in Eastern religious ideas. hough counter culture and alternative religion was their focus, they became at least…… [Read More]
homelessness in America, especially looking at children and families who are homeless. Homelessness has always been an issue in America, but today, there are even more homeless people in the country because of the economic crisis. People have lost their jobs and their homes, and have nowhere to go but the streets. Homelessness used to be viewed as an often solitary issue, but today, many families with children are homeless, and that leads to a dim view of the future for these families.
First, it is important to define homelessness. Two authors write, "It is usually accepted that those who sleep in public places or squat in derelict buildings are homeless" (Chamberlain, and Johnson 35). However, there are many other ways to define homelessness. Families living temporarily in shelters are homeless, and so are people who are hospitalized or institutionalized that have nowhere to go on their release. So are…… [Read More]
Obviously, Sal Paradise, much like Kerouac himself, loves American jazz music, especially played on the acoustic guitar by an African-American jazz/blues giant like Huddie Ledbetter, better known as Leadbelly.
As Mark Richardson sees it, writing in "Peasant Dreams: Reading On The Road," "The strain of the basic primitive," in this case jazz, ". . . is what Sal and Dean listen to in order to hear" what they call "wailing humanity" (Texas Studies in Literature and Language, Internet) or, in other words, the vocals of someone like Leadbelly wailing out the blues, another original form of American music with roots sunk deep in the elements of jazz. For Richardson, it seems that Kerouac's application of jazz in the text of On The Road serves not only as a theme but also as the basic framework for the personalities of Sal and Dean, two rebels "on the road" and "on the…… [Read More]
Too bad the only thing suave about him was his outfit. Even if it was only as suave as it could have been if he'd kept the Armani from Barney's" (qtd in Naugle 52).
In addition to this, is the constant spreading of lies and rumors to climb up the social ladder and the constant intrusion into the lives of other people could also teach teenagers to be uncompassionate and cruel in order to get the things that they desire.
It is true that Cecily von Ziegesar wrote about her own teenage experiences (Naugle 19). She also and tried to avoid preaching to teens and creating overly good characters, as she herself hated these types of novels (Ibid). The Gossip Girl novels and the television show do not intend to cause the readers or viewers harm or expect them to imitate what they see on television or read in books.…… [Read More]
Drug use patterns changed from soft and psychedelic drugs like cannabis and mushrooms to harder drugs like barbiturate pills and heroin. The focus on the hippie movement also dissolved. hat started as a relatively cohesive challenge to commercialism and corruption ended up being a fragmented array of debauch. The death of celebrity musicians like Jimi Hendrix and Janice Joplin triggered the end of the hippie heyday. In spite of its excesses, though, the hippie movement transformed American social values especially among youth culture.
Binkley, Sam. "Hippies." St. James Encyclopedia. 2002. Retrieved Nov 14, 207 at http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_g1epc/is_tov/ai_2419100587
CBC. "Hippie Society: The Youth Rebellion." 2006. Retrieved Nov 14, 2007 at http://archives.cbc.ca/IDD-1-69-580/life_society/hippies/
Erowid. "Hippies." 1996. Retrieved Nov 14, 2007 at http://www.erowid.org/culture/hippies/
Sayre, James K. "Late 60s and Early 70s anti-Vietnam war protests, social and political background notes and a short discussion of some of the best rock 'n roll music of…… [Read More]
Satan has many names in literature, beginning with the Bible, and they are not limited to the image that people have come to associate with his person. For example, Lucifer means "Angel of Light" (apparently the station from which he fell), but he has also been called "The Prince of the Power of the Air," "The Devil," "The Prince of Demons," and, more in line with the needs of this story, "Mephistopheles." He, or a character very like him, is seen as the central opposite of good in many legends, stories, religious writings and artistic depictions throughout history. It seems every culture has to believe in the dichotomous good and evil, so there has to be a primarily "good" character, and a primarily "bad" character. The two stories selected for this comparison contrast paper, Mark Twain's "The Mysterious Stranger" and Goethe's "Faust," use Satan as a central theme, but they…… [Read More]
In fact, he identified himself entirely with it, even in his own self-reflection. In the reflective poem "leroy," published in 1969 under his newly adopted name Amiri Baraka, a nostalgic comment on his mother becomes a lofty vision of himself as the bearer of black wisdom -- that "strong nigger feeling" (5) -- from his ancestors forward to the next generation. He refers to this legacy that he is passing on as his "consciousness" (11), an indication that he had by this point in his life entirely adopted his race as his identity.
This wholehearted self-identification with race, along with a keen awareness of his cultural power as a poet, combined to create an artist absorbed with his own capacity for social comment and change. After the assassination of Malcolm X in 1965, Baraka became disenchanted with the somewhat passive anti-establishment attitudes of the Greenwich Village artistic community, and moved…… [Read More]
"A Good Man is Hard to Find" ends with the family being executed by the Misfit, a murderous outlaw. Although O'Connor's story is evidently supposed to be humorous, it gives the reader pause to note that the family will die without ever exchanging a kind word. There are different types of family violence: the somewhat positive violence of the Roethke poem that makes the boy adore his father at the expense of his mother vs. The carelessness and cruelty in the O'Connor story, which arises as a result of a lack of respect and the superficiality of the modern family. Family relationships do not necessarily create a state of understanding. In the story, the most transcendent moment of grace occurs between two strangers, before one kills the other, as physical violence makes the grandmother appreciate her time on earth. "His voice seemed about to crack and the grandmother's head…… [Read More]
he sunglasses attempts to replace not ony the singer's seat at his lover's side, but also his position in his life by asking about the scar. he fact that he is referred to as "some sunglasses" also alludes to the relative insecurity the singer suffers, not only as a result of the perceived coolness of the sunglasses, but also because of his own all too well-known shortcomings. He gave his lover the scar and he is "trying," and by implication not entirely succeeding, to take it back. In the same way she is "trying to forget" the scar. From both sides then, there are attempts to remedy what has gone awry in the relationship. However, starting with these shortcomings is deceptive, as the refrain and the repetition of metaphorical and symbolic meaning indicate the young singer's faith that what is left between them is stronger than sunglasses or scars. he…… [Read More]
Vintage Book Contemporary American Poetry. Those: - Mark Strand's "The Story Our Lives" - Robert Pinsky's "The Hearts," - Frank O'Hara's "Having a Coke ith You," - Galway Kinnel's "After Making Love e Hear Footsteps," - J.
"Having a Coke ith You"
Frank O'Hara's poem "Having a Coke ith You" presents audiences with an intriguing look into the poet's world as he focuses on discussing a topic that appears to be related to love, but that is actually more confusing that one might be inclined to believe. It seems that the poet is partly joking and partly passionate about the topic of love, considering that even though he compares his lover to some of the world's most beautiful concepts, he does not hesitate to introduce humorous lines as being related to the subject that he is discussing.
O'Hara cleverly addresses ideas such as art and life with the purpose of…… [Read More]
Fern Hill (Dylan Thomas)
The "Poetry Explications" handout from UNC states that a poetry explication is a "relatively short analysis which describes the possible meanings and relationship of the words, images, and other small units that make up a poem."
The speaker in "Fern Hill" dramatically embraces memories from his childhood days at his uncle's farm, when the world was innocent; the second part brings out the speaker's loss of innocence and transition into manhood. This explication will identify and critique Thomas' tone, imagery (including metaphors) and expressive language (as it contributes to the power of the poem). ("Fern Hill" uses 6 verse paragraphs; there are 9 lines in each paragraph.)
"Now as I was young and easy under the apple boughs / About the lilting house and happy as the grass was green / the night above the dingle starry / time let me hail and climb / golden…… [Read More]