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The Unknown Kerouac : Rare, Unpublished and Newly Translated Writings : Library of America - Jack Kerouac

The Unknown Kerouac : Rare, Unpublished and Newly Translated Writings

By: Jack Kerouac, Todd Tietchen (Editor), Jean-Christophe Cloutier (Translator)

Hardcover | 14 November 2016 | Edition Number 1

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A major literary event: a stunning collection of long lost, never-before-published, and newly translated writings by the legendary author of On the Road.

"I am French-Canadian, put into the world in New England. When I am mad, I often swear in French. When I dream, I often dream in French. When I cry I always cry in French." The Library of America continues its acclaimed Kerouac edition with this remarkable gathering of previously unpublished writings, including two novellas originally written in the French-Canadian dialect journal. This unprecedented collection offers intimate glimpses of the growth of Kerouac's mind and art, revealing him, for the first time, to have been essentially an immigrant writer, one whose extraordinary style emerged as a fusion his native and adopted languages.

It opens with a series of early essays on Frank Sinatra and bebop that reveal Kerouac to have an acute observer of the postwar cultural scene. The newly translated novellas "The Night Is My Woman" (La Nuit est ma femme), from 1957—the last work he wrote before composing the On the Road scroll—and "Old Bull in the Bowery" (Sur le chemin)—an alternate version of On the Road written in five days in Mexico—provide missing links in Kerouac's path to a wholly new style of storytelling.

Also included is the pivotal 1951 journal in which Kerouac experiences the breakthrough that leads him to write On the Road, the late reflective works "Memory Babe" and "Beat Spotlight," which offer detailed portraits of his youth and his struggle with fame; and a penetrating interview with his friend and fellow Beat John Clellon Holmes.