Old Angel Midnight

Old Angel Midnight

by Jack Kerouac
     
 

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Old Angel Midnight (1959) was one result of Kerouac's automatic writing experiments in which he would spill his chemically inspired thoughts onto paper to see what came out. Though Kerouac was initially denounced by literary critics as an oddball, his spontaneous twistings and turnings of language rate well with those of Joyce and Stein, and time has proven

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Overview

Old Angel Midnight (1959) was one result of Kerouac's automatic writing experiments in which he would spill his chemically inspired thoughts onto paper to see what came out. Though Kerouac was initially denounced by literary critics as an oddball, his spontaneous twistings and turnings of language rate well with those of Joyce and Stein, and time has proven him to be an important and enduringly popular American writer.-Library Review

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``Never before has inconsequentiality been raised to such a peak that it becomes a breakthrough,'' poet McClure writes in one of this volume's two prefaces. Culled from five notebooks, the writing presented here--one continuous prose poem--spans 1956-59, a period when Kerouac (1922-1969) had immersed himself in Buddhist theory. Offbeat, sometimes preposterous references to religion are to be found throughout: ``This holy and all universe is a wonderful white wild power, why, hell, should, heaven, interfere, words, waiting, flesh, sure, I know . . .'' While it seems redundant to call anything by Kerouac ``spontaneous,'' Beat critic and biographer Charters points out that Kerouac ( On the Road ) conceived of this work as a map of his subconscious, ``without the end or narrative direction'' that his novels often groped for. Thus even more unconstrained, he plays with words, puns, delights in juxtaposed sounds, invents new words and throws in foreign ones almost at random: ``Shoot, pot, proms were flowery purple lilac Richmond eve roadsters redlegs sweetdolls . . .'' Like Kerouac's other manuscripts, this material was kept from publication until after his widow's death. At the time of its writing, this volume might have been considered an experimental ``breakthrough,'' but it feels tired and trite now. (Sept.)
Library Journal
Old Angel Midnight (1959) was one result of Kerouac's automatic writing experiments in which he would spill his chemically inspired thoughts onto paper to see what came out. Though Kerouac was initially denounced by literary critics as an oddball, his spontaneous twistings and turnings of language rate well with those of Joyce and Stein, and time has proven him to be an important and enduringly popular American writer. Also newly available from Grey Fox is Kerouac's Good Blonde & Others ( |ISBN 0-912516-22-4)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780912516974
Publisher:
City Lights Books
Publication date:
01/01/2001
Pages:
89
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.20(d)

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