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Jack Kerouac: On the Road

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Páldi Klaudia

on 20 October 2013

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Transcript of Jack Kerouac: On the Road

Jack Kerouac: On the Road
On the Road
Sal Paradise

autobiographical novel
a cross-country journey
the travels of Kerouac and his friends across America
search for identity
trouble, hardship, abandonment, fear, love

'' 'The beat generation', the post-war 'counter culture' and the 'youth rebellion' begin with Jack Kerouac
('a strange, solitary, Catholic mystic')''

Dean Moriarty

Jack Keruoac
Jack Kerouac
raised in a Catholic environment
excellent student and athlete
at the age of 17 --> writer
Spontaneous prose
depression and alcoholism
died at the age of 47
Páldi Klaudia

Historical background
Post WW II America.
The Beats
BEAT GENERATION (term) --> invented by Jack Kerouac.
BEAT = tired, dissatisfied

Sal Paradise crosses the U.S. 4x

- 1. trip: to San Francisco through Denver
- 2. trip: to New Orleans then to San Francisco
- 3. trip: to San Francisco again
- 4. trip: to Mexico
Short summary:

Ed Dunkel
Sal's aunt


Galatea Dunkel
New York City : Dean Moriarty meets Sal Paradise. Sal admires Dean’s lifestyle.
Sal goes to Denver to meet Dean and his friends.
Parties, alcohol, drugs
Security officer, fieldworker in California, Terry, cotton fields
Next year: Dean visits Sal in New York. Sal’s stable life is ruined.
They drive to San Francisco. Jazz clubs, drinking alcohol.
Next winter: Sal goes to Denver. Dean has started a new life - Sal arrives - mad again.
Dean settles in NY for a while.
Spring: Sal goes to Denver, Dean joins him and they go to Mexico City. Sal alone.
Dean visitis Sal in NY. Sal doesn’t follow Dean to San Francisco.

the narrator
lives in NY City with his aunt
leaves his home and goes west for what is promised to be a better life.
He is an intellect, a writer, a frustrated romantic
the alter-ego of Jack Kerouac.
He is restless -> on the road - hitchhiking, walking, by bus

lives in San Francisco, travels back and forth to NY
a wild, mad character whose energy and craziness affect others -> Sal
the fictional alter ego of Neil Cassady
attractive, energetic, reckless
Rebels and lives for the moment
His lifestyle is in contrast with the bourgeois conception of the necessity of having a fixed work, a good degree and responsibility.




1. wife
becomes a prostitute
leaves her for Camille
2. wife
2 children
she is the "one"
3. wife
New York
leaves her for Camille
New Style:
Narrator: 1st person
The narrative takes place in the years 1947 to 1950
Based around real events
Characters were based on real people

The spontaneous prose
Continuous flowing word
finished in 3 weeks
typed on 1 giant roll of typewriter paper
'hip talk’ -> street language
Main themes:
Travel as
Rejection of authority
Thank You for your attention!
Full transcript