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The Town and the City - Jack Kerouac

The Town and the City

By: Jack Kerouac, Douglas Brinkley (Introduction by)

Paperback

Published: 4th September 2000
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The town is Galloway in Massachusetts, birthplace of the five sons and three daughters of the Martin family in the early 1900s. The city is New York, the vast and heaving melting pot, which lures them all in search of futures and identity. Nearly a decade before the publication of On the Road, the story of the Martins' epic transformation in The Town and the City marked the first true literary impact of the founding father of the Beat Generation. Inspired by grief over his father's death, and his own determination to write the Great American Novel, The Town and the City is an essential prelude to Jack Kerouac's later classics.

New York lures five sons and three daughters of the Martin family from Galloway, Masachusetts in search of their fortunes and new identities. (Kirkus UK)

Jack Kerouac

Jack Kerouac was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, where, he said, he 'roamed fields and riverbanks by day and night, wrote little novels in my room, first novel written at age eleven, also kept extensive diaries and "newspapers" covering my own-invented horse-racing and baseball and football worlds' (as recorded in the novel Doctor Sax). He was educated by Jesuit brothers in Lowell. He said that he 'decided to become a writer at age seventeen under influence of Sebastian Sampas, local young poet, who later died on Anzio beach head; read the life of Jack London at eighteen and decided to also be a lonesome traveler; early literary influences Saroyan and Hemingway; later Wolfe (after I had broken leg in Freshman football at Columbia read Tom Wolfe and roamed his New York on crutches).'

Kerouac wished, however, to develop his own new prose style, which he called 'spontaneous prose.' He used this technique to record the life of the American 'traveler' and the experiences of the Beat generation of the 1950s. This may clearly be seen in his most famous novel On the Road, and also in The Subterraneans and The Dharma Bums. His first more orthodox published novel was The Town and the City. Jack Kerouac, who described himself as a 'strange solitary crazy Catholic mystic,' was working on his longest novel, a surrealistic study of the last ten years of his life when he died in 1969, aged forty-seven.

Other works by Jack Kerouac include Big Sur, Desolation Angels, Lonesome Traveler, Visions of Gerard, Tristessa, and a book of poetry called Mexico City Blues. On the Road: The Original Scroll, the full uncensored transcription of the original manuscript of On the Road, is published by Penguin Modern Classics.

Visit Jack Kerouac's Booktopia Author Page


ISBN: 9780141182230
ISBN-10: 0141182237
Series: Penguin Classics Ser.
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 512
Published: 4th September 2000
Dimensions (cm): 20.1 x 10.8  x 3.2
Weight (kg): 0.35
Edition Number: 1