The Portable Beat Reader
is an excellent and thorough study of the Beat Generation, compiled and edited by Ann Charters, biographer of Jack Kerouac and one of our most notable experts on Beat literature and ideas. This lively work of scholarship goes deeply into the history of the Beat movement, investigating events such as the discovery (by writer William Burroughs) of the word beat
to describe this literary generation. The reader includes essays on all the major prose and poetry writers, such as Allen Ginsberg, and offers rare insight into the literary-historical context of the movement.