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A Vast Glowing Empty Page

The Life & Writings of Jack Kerouac

ByPaul Maher Jr.

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A Vast Glowing Empty Page: The Life and Writings of Jack Kerouac takes the reader from American writer Jack Kerouac's fledgling years in the mill town of Lowell, Massachusetts through his last desperate years in St. Petersburg, Florida. Read of the hapless young man searching for his voice as a writer as he struggles through the pitfalls of school, family conflicts, poverty, World War II, fame and the growing social unrest of the 1960s. Using archival material such as journals, notebooks, diaries and letters as well as Kerouac's published books and letters, this extensive biographical portrait promises to be the most definitive and up-to-date exploration of this writer's life. "[A] thoroughly researched and worthy biography. . . . Kerouac is an engaging mix of anecdote and archive.Tales of ecstasy and despair, of drugs and drunkenness and poetry, are counterbalanced by Maher's perceptive commentary and criticism. Kerouac himself comes over as a confused romantic perpetually in danger of self-destruction, a man driven by the twin demons of wanderlust." —Times Literary Supplement "Kerouac research was for decades limited because his personal journals were unavailable to scholars. That has all changed now that the New York Public Library holds the Kerouac archive, which forms the basis of Maher's work. . . . A useful piece in a difficult puzzle [that] sheds new light on a writer of considerable interest." —Library Journal "Maher was raised in the blue-collar neighborhood of Centralville where Kerouac lived four decades before. But back in the early 1980s, Maher's teachers hardly mentioned the Lowell-born Kerouac. Maher has redeemed that hometown neglect with an insightful biography that chronicles the life, literary dreams, and sad decline of one of America's most misunderstood writers. Representing a decade's research, Maher uses the author's letters, journals, and lesser-known writings to separate the private man from the public myth. . . . A thorough, readable, and balanced portrait, this book represents an important and impressive addition to a growing body of Kerouac scholarship. . . . Maher spent several years pouring over the Kerouac archive at the New York Public Library, transcribing handwritten letters and diaries, manuscripts and legal documents. More than most biographers, he scrutinized early writings from ATOP THE UNDERWOOD and denser later works, like VISIONS OF CODY, for clues to Kerouac's lifelong preoccupations. Maher has found a 'serio

Details

Publication Date
May 1, 2022
Language
English
ISBN
9781435770249
Category
Biographies & Memoirs
Copyright
All Rights Reserved - Standard Copyright License
Contributors
By (author): Paul Maher Jr.

Specifications

Pages
586
Binding
Paperback
Interior Color
Black & White
Dimensions
US Trade (6 x 9 in / 152 x 229 mm)

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