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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Tau By Philip Lamantia and Journey to the End By John Hoffman
Pocket Poets Number 59
Philip Lamantia, John Hoffman
Two new books from the classic Beat period: mystical poems by Philip Lamantia and the long-lost "Six Gallery" poems by legendary hipster John Hoffman.
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Why Kerouac Matters
The Lessons of On the Road (They're Not What You Think)
John Leland
Legions of youthful Americans have taken On the Road as a manifesto for rebellion and an inspiration to hit the road. But there is much more to the book than that. In Why Kerouac Matters, John Leland embarks on a wry, insightful, and playful...
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Venice West
The Beat Generation in Southern California
John Arthur Maynard
"The book's bold, skillful narrative and willingness to reach far beyond its immediate subjects toward national significance make it both irresistible and important."--American Historical Review
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Huge Dreams
San Francisco and Beat Poems
Michael McClure
Huge Dreams republishes two books, out of print for thirty years, which together are a cornerstone of the Beat movement--The New Book/A Book of Torture and Star. Both were influential in expanding poetry into a larger world--the West Coast Beat...
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Scratching the Beat Surface
Essays on New Vision from Blake to Kerouac
Michael McClure
Eloquent discussions on the Beat Movement and its connections to the world. Photos by Larry Keenan.
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Desolate Angel
Jack Kerouac, the Beat Generation, and America
Dennis McNally
The long-awaited reissue of the definitive biography of Jack Kerouac, unwitting avatar of the Beat Generation and author of On the Road. Jack Kerouac--"King of the Beats," unwitting catalyst for the '60s counterculture, groundbreaking author--was a...
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San Francisco Beat
Talking with the Poets
David Meltzer
San Francisco Beat is an essential archive of the Beat Generation, a rich moment in a fortunate place. America-somnolent, conformist, and paranoid in the 1950s-was changed forever by a handful of people who refused an existence of drudgery and...
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When I Was a Poet
Pocket Poets Number 60
David Meltzer
An autobiographical masterpiece by a prominent Beat poet, who Ferlinghetti has deemed "one of the greats."
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The Beat Hotel
Ginsberg, Burroughs & Corso in Paris, 1957-1963
Barry Miles
The Beat Hotel is a delightful chronicle of a remarkable moment in American literary history. From the Howl obscenity trial to the invention of the cut-up technique, Barry Miles's extraordinary narrative chronicles the feast of ideas that was Paris...
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Call Me Burroughs
A Life
Barry Miles
Fifty years ago, Norman Mailer asserted, "William Burroughs is the only American novelist living today who may conceivably be possessed by genius." Few since have taken such literary risks, developed such individual political or spiritual ideas, or spanned such a wide range of media. Burroughs wrote novels, memoirs, technical manuals, and poetry...
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Beat Atlas
A State by State Guide to the Beat Generation in America
Bill Morgan
The ultimate tour guide for those interested in the Beats and their travels "on the road."
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Beat Generation in New York
A Walking Tour of Jack Kerouac's City
Bill Morgan
Set off on the eternal trail of the Beat experience in the city that inspired many of Jack Kerouac's best-loved novels including On the Road, Vanity of Duluoz, The Town and the City, and Desolation Angels. This is the ultimate guide to Kerouac's New York.
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I Celebrate Myself
The Somewhat Private Life of Allen Ginsberg
Bill Morgan
In the first biography of Ginsberg since his death in 1997 and the only one to cover the entire span of his life, Ginsberg's archivist Bill Morgan draws on his deep knowledge of Ginsberg's largely unpublished private journals to give readers an...
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Peter Orlovsky, A Life in Words
Intimate Chronicles of a Beat Writer
Peter Orlovsky, Bill Morgan
Until now, the poet Peter Orlovsky, who was Allen Ginsberg s lover for more than forty years, has been the neglected member of the Beat Generation. Because he lived in Ginsberg's shadow, his achievements were seldom noted and his contributions to literature have not been fully recognized. Now, this first collection of Orlovsky s writings traces...

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