"What I'm beginning to discover now is something beyond the novel and beyond the arbitrary confines of the story. . . . I'm making myself seek to find the wild form, that can grow with my wild heart . . . because now I know MY HEART DOES GROW." Jack Kerouac, in a letter to John Clellon Holmes
Written in 1951-52, Visions of Cody was an underground legend by the time it was finally published in 1972. Writing in a radical, experimental form ("the New Journalism fifteen years early," as Dennis McNally noted in Desolate Angel), Kerouac created the ultimate account of his voyages with Neal Cassady during the late forties, which he captured in different form in On the Road. Here are the members of the Beat Generatoin as they were in the years before any label had been affixed to them. Here is the postwar America that Kerouac knew so well and celebrated so magnificently. His ecstatic sense of superabundant reality is informed by the knowledge of mortality: "I'm writing this book because we're all going to die. . . . My heart broke in the general despair and opened up inward to the Lord, I made a supplication in this dream."
"The most sincere and holy writing I know of our age." Allen Ginsberg
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.42(w) x 10.92(h) x 0.82(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
Jack Kerouac(1922-1969), the central figure of the Beat Generation, was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, in 1922 and died in St. Petersburg, Florida, in 1969. Among his many novels are On the Road, The Dharma Bums, Big Sur, and Visions of Cody.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
In Visions of Cody, Kerouac's spontaneous prose reaches its highest level. A draft of what would eventually become On the Road, VOC stands alone as a brilliant evocation of Cody (Dean in OTR). Forget about plot or chronology---Kerouac flings himself far beyond the restrictions of narrative conventions here. Despite this, his liberated prose never approaches the pedantic egocentrism of Joyce. Kerouac's writing is accessible even at its most experimental. In VOC we see his incredible talent for perceiving beauty in everything from a lowlife drifter to a depot urinal. This profound romanticism is refreshing in light of the tired, jaded cynicism of his twentieth century peers. VOC is a vision of a pure and passionate America, where an artist can still quest for truth and beauty, even in the wasteland.
I've enjoyed a lot of Kerouac on a fleeting basis - I was told 'On the Road' and 'Dharma Bums' were THE BOOKs to read. Lo and behold, it turns out those were just the commercial pop singles for an artist whose real masterpieces are the obscure deep album cuts.My Desert Island Kerouac books are this and 'Doctor Sax,' for sheer aural sensual beauty.
A work of flawed genius. Kerouac tries to hard to be spontaneous here, and the results are pretty muddled.