Beat Literature & History
The Beat Generation may be most famous for Jack Kerouac (On the Road), Allen Ginsberg (Howl), and William S. Burroughs (Naked Lunch), but in fact it claims an amazing number of inspired writers. Delve into our complete selection of fine books by and about the Beats and their accomplices —among them,  Neal Cassady, Herbert Huncke, Gregory Corso, Diane di Prima, Ted Joans, John Clellon Holmes, Anne Waldman, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Michael McClure, Gary Snyder, Robert Duncan, Philip Lamantia, Bob Kaufman, Bob Creeley, Kenneth Rexroth. Browse your favorite author, search for a specific title, or just look through the entire selection of over 200 Beat books, presented alphabetically by author.

Books in this online selection represent only a sliver of what we offer in the store. If you've got a particular book in mind and want to check on its availability, call us at 415-362-8193.

  |  Neal Cassady
  |  Gregory Corso
  |  Bob Kaufman
  |  Jack Kerouac
  |  Gary Snyder

   
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The Z Collection
Portraits and Sketches
Jan Herman
A time capsule made of words, this fascinating and thoroughly entertaining collection of 21 short vignettes shines a personal and penetrating light on a score of mainstream and countercultural figures, including William Burroughs, Norman Mailer, Mary Hemingway, Paul Theroux, John Cheever, Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, and more.
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I Greet You at the Beginning of a Great Career
The Selected Correspondence of Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Allen Ginsberg, 1955-1997
Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Allen Ginsberg, Bill Morgan
Out Now: Marking the 60th anniversary of City Lights Publishers, we present the intimate correspondence of Ginsberg & Ferlinghetti, documenting one of the longest relationships between a publisher and a writer.
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The Essential Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg, Michael Schumacher
Featuring the legendary and groundbreaking poem "Howl," this remarkable volume showcases a selection of Allen Ginsberg's poems, songs, essays, letters, journals, and interviews and contains sixteen pages of his personal photographs.
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Howl on Trial
The Battle for Free Expression
Bill Morgan, Nancy J. Peters
The inside story of the publication and defense of Howl in correspondence, documents and photographs.
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Beat Poets
Everyman's Library Pocket Poets
Carmela Ciuraru
This rousing anthology features the work of more than twenty-five writers from the great twentieth-century countercultural literary movement. Writing with an audacious swagger and an iconoclastic zeal, and declaiming their verse with dramatic flourish...
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Old Angel Midnight
Jack Kerouac
"The only book I've ever written in which I've allowed myself to say absolutely anything I want . . ."—Jack Kerouac
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Writing Across the Landscape
Travel Journals 1960-2010
Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Giada Diano, Matthew Gleeson
This long-awaited volume provides a panoramic portrait of art and life across the twentieth century, from Mexico to Morocco, Paris to Rome, and beyond.
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Distant Neighbors
The Selected Letters of Wendell Berry and Gary Snyder
Wendell Berry, Gary Snyder, Chad Wriglesworth
In 1969 Gary Snyder returned from a long residence in Japan to the Sierra foothills, where he intended to build a house and settle with his wife and sons. He had just published his first book of essays, Earth House Hold. A few years before, Wendell Berry left New York City for farmland in Port Royal, Kentucky, where he built a small studio...
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Two-Way Mirror
A Poetry Notebook
David Meltzer
A classic book of poetics by a major Beat Generation poet, published in a beautiful casebound gift edition. "One of the great post-World War II San Francisco poets and musicians."–Lawrence Ferlinghetti
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The Poetry Deal
San Francisco Poet Laureate Series No. 5
Diane di Prima
San Francisco Poet Laureate Series No. 5: The Poetry Deal is the first full-length collection of poems in decades from legendary feminist Beat poet, Diane di Prima. "A prolific writer generally associated with the Beat Generation, di Prima deserves wider recognition."—Library Journal
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Lunch Poems: Pocket Poets Number 19
50th Anniversary Edition
Frank O'Hara
Now available! Exquisite 50th anniversary hardcover gift edition of the groundbreaking poetry collection by the leader of the "New York School" of poetry.
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Don't Hesitate: Knowing Allen Ginsberg
'72 Through '97 : Letters & Recollections
Marc Olmsted
Marc Olmsted, a young poet, wrote to Allen Ginsberg in 1972 and was surprised to receive a reply from one of America's most important poets. This letter began a friendship that lasted for decades, taking Olmsted on a journey through the literary world. In this, his memoirs, Olmsted details the turbulent events of his own life...
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The Collected Poems of Philip Lamantia
Philip Lamantia, Garrett Caples, Andrew Joron, Nancy J. Peters
Many poets have contributed to the greatness of City Lights, but few more so than North Beach's own Philip Lamantia (1927-2005). Lamantia published his earliest work in avant-garde magazines when he was 15, then at 16 went to NYC to join the war-exiled Paris surrealists. Known as the foremost American surrealist, he also...
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Robert Duncan in San Francisco
Michael Rumaker
A revealing portrait of a major poet of the SF Renaissance and a gripping account of late '50s gay life.

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