Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Beat Generation” as Want to Read:
Beat Generation
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Beat Generation

3.35  ·  Rating Details ·  393 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
Beat Generation is a play about tension, about friendship, and about karma—what it is and how you get it. It begins one fine morning with a few friends, honest laborers some of them, some close to being down-and-out, passing around a bottle of wine. It ends with a kind of satori-like reaffirmation of the power of friendship, of doing good through not doing, and the intrins ...more
Hardcover, 112 pages
Published October 4th 2005 by Da Capo Press (first published November 1st 1992)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Beat Generation, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Beat Generation

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 929)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Feb 28, 2013 Mat rated it liked it
This play written by Kerouac (and I believe there are only two that he ever wrote, the other one being Doctor Sax and the Great World Snake which was magnificently narrated by Creeley and others on a highly recommended CD + play package) introduces the reader to some fairly interesting hep-talk beat generation talk which is very fast-moving, hyperbolic and digresses off into all sorts of tangents.
It soon becomes clear that the 'Milo' character is or is based on Neal Cassady while 'Buck' has to
Oct 07, 2009 Christina rated it it was ok
Um, On the Road is definitely better. This had no point, which was essentially the point I suppose. It was a bunch of buddies talking..and getting no where in that. It was a super quick read and took me too long to actually want to be reading it..if that makes sense. I didn't mind the third Act. I wanted to like it more than I did. I don't know if I would recommend it.
Aug 07, 2011 Gabriela rated it it was amazing
For anyone obsessed with the Beat Generation, like me, this is a gem. A play, completely based on the beats and written by a beat. Need I say more?
David Rullo
Jun 10, 2014 David Rullo rated it did not like it
Bad Kerouac but a worse play. Usually there's a flow to Kerouac's language and I expected to see that here instead I found disjointed scenes, conversations going nowhere but somehow missing their expected destinations while getting bogged down in bad dialogue mixing horse racing and Buddhism. There's so much good Kerouac out there pass by this dud.
Jun 05, 2016 Aimee rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library
This confused me too much to actually enjoy. I only got to the end of the first act but it was such convoluted nonsense about Buddhism and horse racing that it didn't inspire me much to continue. I get the premise that the play's meant to mirror real life in the nothingness that's really happening, but nonetheless it doesn't make it any good :~)
Leigh Koonce
Jan 18, 2013 Leigh Koonce rated it really liked it
Kerouac's lost play was pretty good. The 2nd act was a bit lost on me, as it involved lots of horseracing terms. The final act, though, was extremely funny. I would love to see a performance!
Sep 25, 2010 Mark rated it liked it
Is holy holy???
Analice Ferreira
Algo pulsa e bate na escrita do Kerouac - pois nunca faz sentido realmente, são situações absurdamente reais sobre pessoas um tanto irreais. Geração Beat é primeiramente, uma peça de teatro.

Não costumo ler peças, não tenho paciência para tanto, mas tive de ler esta devido a minha curiosidade: Será que em Geração Beat, o conceito daquela geração finalmente se revelaria em toda a sua gloriosa forma? - Resposta: Não realmente. Kerouac em pessoa (provavelmente) definia sua cultura e seus individuos
Feb 19, 2011 Benito rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kerouac's one and only play, the manuscript was only recently discovered (2007) in a NY warehouse. The 3rd Act is largely familiar as the basis for the 1959 seminal 'Beat' short film "Pull My Daisy" which had voiceover narration by Keoruac to the silent actions of Allan Ginsberg, Peter Orlovsky and Gregory Corso. It's been criticized as one of Jack's weaker works, but for my money what it lacks in dramatic narrative structure - Kerouac attempting to bring his free-flowing style from page to stag ...more
Dec 05, 2012 Mel rated it liked it
Kerouac is one of my favourite authors of all time. But I must admit I don’t care for everything he does. This was a play he wrote that was going to become a screenplay and honestly it’s a bit Meh. Unlike in his books it’s not really obvious who the characters are supposed to be (apart from Neal). Jack only became obvious in the third act when he started drinking! In many ways I wonder if it was written as a reaction against the ideas of what the Beat Generation were. There was no drug use, no j ...more
My first Kerouac and I'm really looking forward to reading On the Road now. I found Beat Generation to be an interesting play but none one HAS to have read. It took me the whole first act (out of three) to get used to the language and to get into the flow but then it was entertaining and I really enjoyed the second act. Most people prefer the third one, but I did not find it to be any funnier than the other two. Wondering why I'm not saying anything about the plot? It's basically non-existent - ...more
Jul 30, 2011 Aaron added it
My first experience with Kerouac comes in play form, and I'm honestly not really sure what to think. It is sort of stream of consciousness, but perhaps with a little more structure? It was pretty difficult to get into at first, but by midway through act two I was accustomed enough to the style to understand the (plot?).

As the back cover states, Kerouac focuses on a group of individuals who have a very short distance to fall in order to reach rock bottom. The hope on display here is astounding, c
Feb 06, 2016 Lydia rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2016-reads
literally no point to that play. just a bunch of misogynist friends tramping around, getting drunk and betting on horses. not worth my time.
Feb 04, 2014 Shaun rated it liked it
Kerouac's unique style works good in prose, but I'm not sure about drama though...
Apr 15, 2008 Nick rated it liked it
Jack Kerouac could do a lot of things well, they say, but apparently playwriting was not one of them. This is a formless, motionless, and ultimately pointless play about....winos talking about betting on the horses. My fearless prediction is that they'll never make a movie out of it.
Jun 23, 2012 Matt rated it it was ok
Shelves: play-hunt
This play did nothing for me. I couldn't get into the rhythm of the language and the lack of dramatic structure made this one a true dud. It had some okay speeches from a character here and there, but that, in no way, can carry a play.
Katherine Freniere
Jun 27, 2013 Katherine Freniere rated it liked it
Oh man. 3 stars for making me laugh out loud. I wouldn't necessarily say it's a good read, but the absurdity of it all kept me entertained. It's like Seinfeld meets the Beats.
Apr 17, 2012 Robert rated it it was amazing
If ya gotta ask who you won't want to read but if ya said Oh yeah ,read this or die !
Aug 20, 2007 Sabina rated it liked it
Jack Kerouac wrote a play and this is it. All that is expected arrives with this one.
Jack Kerouac'ın bence pek de başarılı olmayan bir oyunu.
Oct 06, 2011 Fred rated it did not like it
Sorry, Jack, but this was a failed attempt.
Jan 01, 2013 Athena rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Didn't understand a word!
Aug 06, 2007 jake rated it did not like it
glad he stuck to novels.
David Przybylinski
David Przybylinski marked it as to-read
Sep 22, 2016
Brandon rated it liked it
Sep 19, 2016
Joshua Healey
Joshua Healey marked it as to-read
Sep 19, 2016
Addison Carter
Addison Carter marked it as to-read
Sep 15, 2016
Francisco Neto
Francisco Neto marked it as to-read
Sep 11, 2016
Diana marked it as to-read
Sep 10, 2016
Ashley marked it as to-read
Sep 08, 2016
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 30 31 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Portable Arthur Miller
  • Deliberate Prose: Selected Essays, 1952-1995
  • Jack Kerouac: Angelheaded Hipster
  • The Place of Dead Roads
  • Poets on the Peaks
  • Dubin's Lives
  • The Beat Hotel: Ginsberg, Burroughs and Corso in Paris, 1957-1963
  • Orestes and Other Plays (Oxford World's Classics)
  • Tales of O. Henry
  • The First Forty-Nine Stories
  • Four Great Plays: Ghosts; The Wild Duck; An Enemy of the People; A Doll's House
  • Poetry as Insurgent Art
  • Burning Bright
  • The Beat Book
  • The Stories of F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • Three Novels of Old New York: The House of Mirth; The Custom of the Country; The Age of Innocence
  • Too Brief a Treat: The Letters of Truman Capote
Born on March 12, 1922, in Lowell, Massachusetts, Jack Kerouac's writing career began in the 1940s, but didn't meet with commercial success until 1957, when On the Road was published. The book became an American classic that defined the Beat Generation. Kerouac died on October 21, 1969, from an abdominal hemorrhage, at age 47.
Early Life

Famed writer Jack Kerouac was born Jean-Louis Lebris de Keroua
More about Jack Kerouac...

Share This Book