The Spontaneous Poetics of Jack Kerouac: A Study of the Fiction

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Southern Illinois University Press, 1987 - Literary Criticism - 180 pages

Regina Weinreich explores Kerouac's place in American literature by establishing the tot­al design of his work. She con­tends that he thought of his works as “one vast book” (a “Divine Comedy of Buddha”) he called the Legend of Duluoz.

Weinreich finds that Kerouac's linguistic experimen­tation leads to a poetic unity rather than the linear unity com­monly associated with legends. She discusses the na­ture of his “spontaneous bop prosody,” relating it to the work of Thomas Wolfe and Henry Miller.

In addition to explaining Kerouac's method, Weinreich seeks to define the unity of his works, from The Town and the City, On the Road, and Visions of Cody to Desolation Angels and Vanity of Duluoz, which she argues brings the legend full circle. Weinreich feels the auto­biographical nature of Kerouac's oeuvre links him to other twentieth-century American writers, following a distinctly Whitmanesque tradition.

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The spontaneous poetics of Jack Kerouac: a study of the fiction

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Focusing on Kerouac's desire to create one vast book, the Duluoz legend, Weinreich successfully demonstrates that each work tries to solve a structural problem presented in a prior one. Her analysis ... Read full review


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