Synopses & Reviews
Energy, conviction, and unexpected brilliance.-New Yorker. The definitive history of the 'beat generation'.... It is an authoritative piece of literary history as a result of which Kerouac, Burroughs, and Ginsberg will be read with greater understanding, sympathy, and insight.-Leon Edel. Naked Angels is continually illuminating...written with insight, passion, and an awareness of just how prophetic these men were in their lives and works. I consider it an essential book.-John Clellon Holmes. Strong, urgent, ultimately thrilling.-Peter Schjeldahl, New York Times Book Review. As fine a view as we are likely to get of this vibrant phase in American literary history.-Chicago Sun-Times. A thoroughly readable and persuasive work...by far the best extensive commentaries on the works of Burroughs, Kerouac, and Ginsberg.-Thomas Parkinson, American Literature.
Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and William S. Burroughs their emergence in the late 1950s as the leading figures of the Beat movement marked one of the most spectacular developments in post-World War II American literature. John Tytell's classic study examines their attempt to redefine a complacent society's notion of sanity and normalcy and to reinvent their own lives through jazz, drugs, and law-breaking, acts that ultimately led to new forms of expression. A fascinating blend of literary and social criticism, history, and biography, Naked Angels is an indispensable introduction to the lives and work of these seminal figures, and an unsurpassed look at the powerful influence they had on the 1960s and beyond.