Tuesday, April 30, 2019

779: Getting ready for the Counterculture....

When you read a sentence like this one: "...who let themselves be fucked in the ass by saintly motorcyclists, and screamed with joy....",
you may wonder what that is about? But I doubt that you are deeply shocked by such a text these days.
It is from the poem "Howl" by Allen Ginsberg and customs officials seized 520 copies of the poem on March 25, 1957, being imported from the printer in London.
On June 3 Shig Murao, a bookstore manager, was arrested and jailed for selling Howl and Other Poems to an undercover San Francisco police officer. 
There came a trail and eventually nobody was convicted. It was October 1955, two years earlier, that Ginsberg read his poem "Howl" for an audience.
This moment is regarded as the start-up of the Beat Generation. It was a literary movement started by a group of authors 
whose work explored and influenced American culture and politics in the post-war era. 
The bulk of their work was published and popularized throughout the 1950s. The central elements of Beat culture are 
the rejection of standard narrative values, making a spiritual quest, the exploration of American and Eastern religions, 
the rejection of materialism, explicit portrayals of the human condition, experimentation with psychedelic drugs, and sexual liberation and exploration.
The members of the Beat Generation developed a reputation as new bohemian hedonists, who celebrated non-conformity and spontaneous creativity.
If you happen to think that the word "Beat" is related to the verb "to beat", then you will be surprised, for this is not the case.
According to Jack Kerouac the word is partly inspired by some dealer on Times Square NY, who used the term "beat" to indicate a state of ecstatic exhaustion,
and further it was related to the catholic concept "beatific sight". This may also change your ideas about the name "The Beatles".
After the previous lecture one of those present remarked " the problem I see with the beat generation is that most of them ended up wasted, with drugs, alcohol, bad habits"
That may be true for Jack Kerouac, who died at the age of 47. Allen Ginsberg, however, died when he was 70. 

I dare to doubt that despite all drugs and alcohol and bad habits we have here a wasted generation. On the contrary, they offered the inspiration for the counterculture of the 1960s.
One of the leading books of the Beat Generation is "On the Road" by Jack Kerouac. It is only a 70 pages and you can find a free PDF here: p.iplsc.com/-/00070IPJY9D5LK3Q.pdf
The idea for On the Road, Kerouac's second novel, was formed during the late 1940s in a series of notebooks, 
and then typed out on a continuous reel of paper during three weeks in April 1951. It was first published by Viking Press in 1957.
When the book was originally released, The New York Times hailed it as "the most beautifully executed, 
the clearest and the most important utterance yet made by the generation Kerouac himself named years ago as 'beat,' and whose principal avatar he is."
It was about 1970 that I saw the book on the bookshelf of a friend, but I never have read it, but I did eight chapters already now....... still a chance to become an old beatnik.
Thank you for your attention again.....

The Discussion

[2019/04/25 13:20]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): :-)
[2019/04/25 13:20] Thank you for your attention again.....
[2019/04/25 13:20]       
[2019/04/25 13:20]  oola Neruda: the jazz world changed then also
[2019/04/25 13:21]  herman Bergson: Yes...music is a whole new chapter oola
[2019/04/25 13:21]  herman Bergson: R&B became popular too
[2019/04/25 13:21]  herman Bergson: Whites began to play that music
[2019/04/25 13:22]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): interesting
[2019/04/25 13:22]  herman Bergson: And of course in the US there was happening a lot more....
[2019/04/25 13:22]  oola Neruda: I see ornette coleman and John Coltrane as culminations of that change
[2019/04/25 13:22]  herman Bergson: but we'll get to that issues of course
[2019/04/25 13:22]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): ahh I love Coltrane
[2019/04/25 13:23]  CB Axel: There was a lot to rebel against.
[2019/04/25 13:23]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): can imagine
[2019/04/25 13:23]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): just now they are beginning to recognize the benefit of psychedelic drugs
[2019/04/25 13:23]  herman Bergson: Yes indeeed
[2019/04/25 13:23]  Anna Adamant Albion (anna.adamant): is offline.
[2019/04/25 13:23]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): and use for ptsd
[2019/04/25 13:24]  oola Neruda: would you consider ROUND MIDNIGHT to be beat?
[2019/04/25 13:24]  oola Neruda: film
[2019/04/25 13:24]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): dont know it
[2019/04/25 13:24]  herman Bergson: Don;t know the movie
[2019/04/25 13:25]  oola Neruda: about jazz musicians in Paris... people such as Billie Holliday et all.... Dexter Gordan played the lead
[2019/04/25 13:26]  herman Bergson: Is there an old (ex)beatnik among us here? :-)
[2019/04/25 13:26]  oola Neruda: my older brother
[2019/04/25 13:26]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): GIGGLES!!
[2019/04/25 13:26]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
[2019/04/25 13:26] Beertje (beertje.beaumont): you?
[2019/04/25 13:26]  Jo Jung: It's from Bertrand Travernier. Music by H. Hancock
[2019/04/25 13:27]  CB Axel: I'm not old enough to have been a beatnik. :-)
[2019/04/25 13:27]  herman Bergson: yes....as a 1949 build myself I contantly have the feeling I just missd the bus
[2019/04/25 13:27]  Jo Jung: who won a Oscar for this, btw
[2019/04/25 13:27]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): were they like those who still follow the rolling stones all over ?
[2019/04/25 13:27]  herman Bergson: Kerouac and Ginsberg were from around 1925...
[2019/04/25 13:27]  oola Neruda: also "cool jazz" gerry mulligan and chet baker
[2019/04/25 13:28]  CB Axel: Jo, it was made in 1986, so it may be about the beat generation, but it wasn't made by them.
[2019/04/25 13:28]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): Beat makes me think of hip hop beats, i have a friend who is awesome at making those
[2019/04/25 13:28]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[2019/04/25 13:28]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): plus that im into the street dance scene (where i also met that guy)
[2019/04/25 13:28]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but thats something different
[2019/04/25 13:29]  herman Bergson: Yes, BEAT has nothing to do with music here, but with a state of mind, I'd say
[2019/04/25 13:29]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aa
[2019/04/25 13:29]  oola Neruda: exa tlly
[2019/04/25 13:29]  CB Axel: Yes. Beat down. Exhausted.
[2019/04/25 13:29]  oola Neruda: exactly
[2019/04/25 13:30]  oola Neruda: hip
[2019/04/25 13:30]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): so the beat generation goes to prove that an underdeveloped or malfunctioning neocortex (poor impulse control, failures in executive function, chronic depression and addictions ... have its positive side too :p
[2019/04/25 13:30]  herman Bergson: When I found that in the literature I immediately thought of The Beatles....
[2019/04/25 13:30]  CB Axel: lol
[2019/04/25 13:30]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): creativity
[2019/04/25 13:30]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hehe
[2019/04/25 13:30]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): brilliant music
[2019/04/25 13:31]  herman Bergson: I don;t agree Elisabeth.....
[2019/04/25 13:31]  oola Neruda: i do... they deconstructed accepted musical forms
[2019/04/25 13:32]  herman Bergson: The cultural achievements of the beat generation in literature and art weren't the product of cerebral malfunctions drowned in drugs and alcohol
[2019/04/25 13:32]  oola Neruda: true
[2019/04/25 13:32]  herman Bergson: Even Kerouac described how he really worked on his books
[2019/04/25 13:33]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): right
[2019/04/25 13:33]  herman Bergson: although he died because of alcohol abuse
[2019/04/25 13:33]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): thinks that was the history of f scott fitzgerald mmuch earlier and Hemingway too
[2019/04/25 13:34]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): I´m reluctant to regard bohemian hedonism as a valid path for life
[2019/04/25 13:34]  herman Bergson: the beat generation opened the doors for the counterculture
[2019/04/25 13:34]  CB Axel: It seems that a lot of writers suffer from depression and self-medicate with drugs and alcohol.
[2019/04/25 13:35]  herman Bergson: There we run into an ethical debat and even ontological one
[2019/04/25 13:35]  herman Bergson: Elisabeth
[2019/04/25 13:35]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): nods
[2019/04/25 13:35]  herman Bergson: It is a fact that that generation questioned the path live should take
[2019/04/25 13:36]  herman Bergson: We didn't yet touch on it...but in Europe existentialism was an important influence in this debate
[2019/04/25 13:37]  herman Bergson: But it is here in the background.....
[2019/04/25 13:37]  Android Neox (androidneox2): I've wondered if manic-depression, bipolar disorder, could be good for writing... periods of confident energy followed by periods of introspection and doubt... writing and editing
[2019/04/25 13:37]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): if existence precedes essence, what does the existence of the beat-nick generation tell us about their essence?
[2019/04/25 13:38]  CB Axel: That's an interesting thought, Android.
[2019/04/25 13:38]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): i think that is to be considered in a lot of creativity android
[2019/04/25 13:38]  herman Bergson: Yes, Elisabeth...good question
[2019/04/25 13:39]  herman Bergson: Not all writers are psychiatric patients.....some are....
[2019/04/25 13:39]  oola Neruda: in the art world, the saying is... people who are depressed etc. usually go into study of psychology..to understand themselves.. or into art to express it
[2019/04/25 13:39]  Android Neox (androidneox2): Changes in culture are generally due to some suppressed feeling or need in society. Then someone or something brings it all together. Like in chemistry where a supersaturated solution can suddenly crystallize about one nucleating crystal.
[2019/04/25 13:39]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa very possible
[2019/04/25 13:39]  herman Bergson: I think it is a classic romantic belief that you have to suffer in life to be a gifted artist
[2019/04/25 13:39]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): same with people with say autism can often be extremly good and creative at a particular thing
[2019/04/25 13:40]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): virginia woolf suffered from bipolar depression
[2019/04/25 13:40]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): I can say that me myself is diagnosed with this
[2019/04/25 13:40]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i have Asbergers
[2019/04/25 13:40]  Android Neox (androidneox2): I can also see how the changes in world view of a bipolar personality could broaden an individuals understanding/experience
[2019/04/25 13:40]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and yes im a creative dude
[2019/04/25 13:40]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and a little crazy
[2019/04/25 13:41]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but also really nice
[2019/04/25 13:41]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[2019/04/25 13:41]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): Im well me
[2019/04/25 13:41]  herman Bergson: /me smiles
[2019/04/25 13:41]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[2019/04/25 13:41]  herman Bergson: You definitely are Bejiita :-))
[2019/04/25 13:41]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): lol
[2019/04/25 13:41]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): YAY! (yay!)
[2019/04/25 13:42]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): Greta thunberg has just been nominated for the nobel peace prize for climate activism and she has asperger syndrome too :)
[2019/04/25 13:42]  oola Neruda: some are savaunts
[2019/04/25 13:42]  herman Bergson: But to get back to Elisabeth question: if existence precedes essence, what does the existence of the beat-nick generation tell us about their essence?
[2019/04/25 13:42]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa
[2019/04/25 13:42]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): I also think she do a good thing
[2019/04/25 13:42]  Android Neox (androidneox2): There's a phrase I've heard from science fiction writers on getting the best benefit from your own particular abilities and finding one's "voice"... "Exploit your weirdness"
[2019/04/25 13:42]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): someone have to stand up and make the point or nothing will happen
[2019/04/25 13:42]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): good one android :)
[2019/04/25 13:42]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa yes
[2019/04/25 13:42]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[2019/04/25 13:42]  oola Neruda: could some of it be reaction to having had two world wars....
[2019/04/25 13:43]  herman Bergson: That may be the essence of the beat-nick generation, Bejiita......standing up and making a point
[2019/04/25 13:43]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa
[2019/04/25 13:43]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): maybe oola
[2019/04/25 13:43]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): I guess
[2019/04/25 13:43]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): i think it is a good thing that all of us are not creative .. it leaves and audience
[2019/04/25 13:44]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): an audience
[2019/04/25 13:44]  herman Bergson: There is a big difference here oola....
[2019/04/25 13:44]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): the banality of existence is hard to cope with now that we have everything we need.. go figure what it must have been like to deal with that angst back then, after two wars
[2019/04/25 13:44]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): by having everything we need, I mean now that things are more or less civil
[2019/04/25 13:45]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): at least here in western developed countries
[2019/04/25 13:45]  herman Bergson: Europe suffered under the destructive powers of two wars....the US never did.....
[2019/04/25 13:45]  herman Bergson: But both lost human lives in the wars
[2019/04/25 13:45]  oola Neruda: do existentialism and beat... have similar roots
[2019/04/25 13:45]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): that is a good question oola
[2019/04/25 13:45]  herman Bergson: My feeling is to answer yes.....
[2019/04/25 13:46]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): it started with kierkeggard
[2019/04/25 13:46]  herman Bergson: because both focus on an increasing individualism in the cultur
[2019/04/25 13:46]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): back in the 19th century
[2019/04/25 13:46]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): he is regarded as the father of existentialism
[2019/04/25 13:47]  herman Bergson: YEs Elisabeth...
[2019/04/25 13:47]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): he was profoundly depressed and regarded life as a bitter experience
[2019/04/25 13:47]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): I love his little book *crumbs*
[2019/04/25 13:47]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): diapsalmata?
[2019/04/25 13:47]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): he has some awesome aphorisms there
[2019/04/25 13:48]  herman Bergson: I assume you can find that literature for free on the internet
[2019/04/25 13:49]  herman Bergson: maybe in the Adeleide library
[2019/04/25 13:49]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): shall look
[2019/04/25 13:49]  oola Neruda: would you include Nietzsche too?
[2019/04/25 13:49]  herman Bergson: I found On the Road too very easily
[2019/04/25 13:49]  herman Bergson: include in what oola?
[2019/04/25 13:49]  Android Neox (androidneox2): DIAPSALMATA: http://www.ccel.org/k/kierkegaard/selections/diapsalmata.htm
[2019/04/25 13:49]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): (I´ll have a look at on the road too)
[2019/04/25 13:49]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ♥ Thank Youuuuuuuuuu!! ♥
[2019/04/25 13:50]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): my favorites list is getting too long
[2019/04/25 13:50]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa ok
[2019/04/25 13:50]  herman Bergson: Have read it today half already......
[2019/04/25 13:50]  herman Bergson: Bar in bar out :-)
[2019/04/25 13:50]  herman Bergson: I am still wondering what it is about.....
[2019/04/25 13:51]  herman Bergson: the message/meaning
[2019/04/25 13:51]  oola Neruda: I found it very pedestrian...in the extreme... the way a very disallusioned person... hoping for enlightenment would be... when it did not occur
[2019/04/25 13:51]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): well it all leads to thinking
[2019/04/25 13:51]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): and homework
[2019/04/25 13:51]  herman Bergson: Indeed Gemma
[2019/04/25 13:52]  oola Neruda: hoping...searching... want meaning
[2019/04/25 13:52]  herman Bergson: yes and finally thinking of Dean Moriarty......
[2019/04/25 13:52]  herman Bergson: a person who left....
[2019/04/25 13:52]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ok I'm Sorry! to run off ty
[2019/04/25 13:52]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): I sorry..
[2019/04/25 13:52]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): fish time
[2019/04/25 13:52]  herman Bergson: I know Gemma...it is time :-))
[2019/04/25 13:52]  Beertje (beertje.beaumont): bye Gemma
[2019/04/25 13:53]  Anna Adamant Albion (anna.adamant): is online.
[2019/04/25 13:53]  Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): bye all
[2019/04/25 13:53]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): bye gemma
[2019/04/25 13:53]  herman Bergson: Bye :-)
[2019/04/25 13:53]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): cu gemma
[2019/04/25 13:53]  Melkor (melkor87): Bye.
[2019/04/25 13:53]  oola Neruda: baiii
[2019/04/25 13:53]  herman Bergson: Time to thank you all for your participation again....
[2019/04/25 13:53]  Beertje (beertje.beaumont): thank you Herman
[2019/04/25 13:53]  herman Bergson: Class dismissed...
[2019/04/25 13:53]  CB Axel: Thank you, Herman.
[2019/04/25 13:54]  Elisabeth (elisabeth3210): thank you herman xx
[2019/04/25 13:54]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): interesting again
[2019/04/25 13:54]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): now gonna read that book
[2019/04/25 13:54]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[2019/04/25 13:54]  herman Bergson: We still have to look at the question what legacy this period left for us in the 21st century
[2019/04/25 13:54]  Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and test that program i installed
[2019/04/25 13:55]  CB Axel: Well, I have work to do before the weekend, so I'll see you all on Tuesday.

[2019/04/25 13:55]  CB Axel: Bye, everyone.

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