Litkicks Message Board Archive

beat isnt a style

Posted to Indies




beat was a movement, a label for a generation of writers.

the idea, as far as i see it, if you want to try to attach a commonality to the writing of the beat writers, is that they tried to capture the sponetaneity and truth in life in their style of writing.

beat writing was limited, in general, to american culture, but only in a superficial way. most beat writing was very cognizant of european culture, and in fact embraced buddhism as well.

there really isnt any way to write anything now that could truly be called "beat," in the sense that, again, beat was the generation, not the style. so, beat writing is really limited but only to the degree that it's all already been written.

but there are certainly styles that each of the beat writers called their own that are recognizable as such. ginsberg, kerouac, ferlinghetti, burroughs, etc...

the appeal of "beat" isnt about a certain style of writing that you like (other than it being, relatively, unorthodox), but rather about a certain attitude.

hope this makes sense. welcome.