Emerson and Kerouac
A paper which draws a parallel between two American writers, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Jean Louis Lebris de Kerouac (Jack).
# 23498 | 2,414 words | 15 sources | APA | 2002 |
Published on Jan 27, 2003 in History (U.S. Before 1865) , Literature (American) , English (Analysis) , English (Comparison) , History (U.S. Baby Boom Years 1945-1965) , Literature (Comparative Literature)
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Ralph Waldo Emerson and Jean Louis Lebris de Kerouacwere both born near Boston, one hundred and twenty years apart. The paper shows however, that the similarities in their regard to literary history, as well as the connection between the two in regards to their lives and early writing, is sufficient enough to draw many parallels between them. It shows that both men, as writers and as citizens of America, felt compelled by their discontent and discouragement at the state of affairs in their country, to stake out new ground and develop a new relation to their society and the world at large.
From the Paper:"How does the Beat Generation and the America of the 1950's compare with the social, political, and religious turmoil of the early America Emerson lived in? Both times in our country's history were marked, to a large degree, by an unusual level of conformity. The youth generation's reaction was to, not only fight against it, but to develop a completely alternate mode of consciousness with its own laws, its own set of values, and its own search for a "new and original relation" to the universe. However, my argument is not to so much compare these two times in American history, but rather to show how the conditions of America in the 1950's led to similar questions and similar quests among the youth generation. These questions and quests, when stripped down to a common denominator are essentially spiritual. "By a generation," wrote F.Scott Fitzgerald, "I mean that reaction against fathers which seems to occur about three times a century. It is distinguished by a set ideas,[and] inherited in moderated form from the madmen and outlaws of the generation before."
For Kerouac, and other writers of the Beat Generation, the uncertainty, the provincialism, and social disintegration of Post World War II America, led to a feeling of shiftlessness, indifference, aversion to conformity, and the need to extract all that life had to offer. The green lawns and white picket fences of Middle Class America, the sense of security many people looked for in the aftermath of World War II, held no allure to Jack and his friends. Norman Mailer's essay "The White Negro" describes the Beat Generation as characterized by a quest "to explore that domain of experience where security is boredom and therefore sickness."2"
Cite this Analytical Essay:
Emerson and Kerouac (2003, January 27) Retrieved July 12, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/emerson-and-kerouac-23498/
"Emerson and Kerouac" 27 January 2003. Web. 12 July. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/emerson-and-kerouac-23498/>