Ginsberg Allen 1926 - 1997 (71)

Follow your inner moonlight; don't hide the madness.



Allen Ginsberg, born on June 3, 1926, in New Jersey, was an American poet and representative of the Beat literary generation in the 1950s in America. His parents were both teachers, with his father being a poet and his mother being a member of the Communist Party, who suffered from psychiatric problems and spent significant periods of her life in psychiatric clinics since 1932. In 1943, Allen graduated from high school and began studying law at Columbia University on a scholarship. It was there that he met Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs, and the three of them would become the main representatives of the Beat literature, which expressed the rebelliousness of the 1950s generation and challenged conservative American society. "The Beat Generation was a group of friends, and 'beat' was a term given to friendship," Ginsberg would later state in an interview. His college years were turbulent, including a temporary expulsion from the university, experimentation with drugs, and in June 1949, he was arrested for involvement in thefts that were apparently committed by other members of the group. He served an eight-month sentence in the university psychiatric institute to avoid going to regular prison, where he became friends with the author Solomon, who was being treated for depression.

During his college years, Ginsberg began writing poetry, and in 1955, he publicly recited an excerpt from his poem "Howl." At that event, there was a publisher who offered to immediately publish the poem. It was eventually published a year later along with his other poems, but it was soon banned as obscene. After legal battles, it was re-released. "Howl" by Ginsberg, along with Kerouac's "On the Road" and Burroughs' "Naked Lunch," are the most characteristic works of the Beat literature. In the following years, Ginsberg traveled the world with the poet Orlovsky, visiting Paris, Tangier, Mexico, Greece, Africa, and India. He stayed in India for over a year and embraced Buddhism. He returned to America in 1963 and actively participated in anti-war demonstrations against the Vietnam War. In the subsequent years, he had strong political activism, advocating for LGBTQ rights, against nuclear weapons, and for environmental protection. In 1986, he became an honorary professor at Brooklyn College, and in 1993, he was also honored by the Minister of Culture of France. Ginsberg passed away in 1997 in New York City.