I am a English Literature graduate from Manchester, England and this is a little space in which I am going to write, critically (and, of course, with love), about literature. Whether you’re reading for pleasure, or to help you to understand a poem, play or novel, I hope that you find that which lies here to be informative, interesting and enjoyable!
The name of this blog is taken from a wonderful 1958 essay by Jack Kerouac in which he attempts to describe ‘The Beat Generation’. In it, he claims that the Beats are not ‘roughneck’, ‘violent’, ‘heedless’, or ‘rootless’ as they had been made out to be, but that they are ‘in a state of beatitude, like St. Francis, trying to love all life, trying to be utterly sincere with everyone, practicing endurance, kindness, cultivating joy of heart’; the Beats ‘go off’ by themselves ‘once in a while’ ‘to store up that most precious of golds: the vibrations of sincerity’. The Beats, according to Kerouac in this essay, are sincere, tender and sensitive; the Beats ‘pick back up’ what the Lost Generation once ‘put down’.
This blog is not about the Beat Generation (one 3,000 word essay on Ginsberg’s ‘Howl’ and an exam on the motif of criminal activity in Beat literature has knocked the love of that bunch right out of me for a little while), but I do hope that it will embody all that Kerouac claimed that the Beat Generation encompassed. I hope to continue to seek out moments of life and tenderness in a variety of literature and to share them with you here.