E420 – Beat Generation Writing

Credit Hours:
3

Course Level:
Undergraduate

Semesters Offered:
Spring

Prerequisite: One course in Literature.

Description: This course explores the experiences and historical pressures that made Beat Generation writers, including Kerouac, Ginsberg, Burroughs, and Waldman, a countercultural movement. Beat literature focuses on major works by writers and poets from “T Generation,” including The Collected Poems, by Allen Ginsberg, On The Road, The Dharma Bums, and The Subterreans, by Jack Kerouac, Naked Lunch, by William Burroughs, The Beat Reader, edited by Ann Charters and featuring works by Gregory Corso, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Gary Snyder, Hettie Jones, Bob Kaufman, Charles Bukowski et al. as well as Leroi Jones’ The Dutchman and The Slave, Joyce Johnson’s Minor Characters and Carolyn Cassady’s Off The Road. Requirements for the course include a twenty-minute oral presentation on some aspect of the Beat phenomenon, a take-home midterm, two five-page papers, and a term paper which should deal with a comprehensive theme shared by most Beat writers.