Muses

Jack Kerouac (1922 - 1969)

The son of French-Canadian parents, Jack Kerouac rapidly showed potential as a talented football player but lost interest in the game and joined the merchant marine in the early 1940s. In 1951, in New York, the writer began working on what would become his iconic novel, On the Road. Released in 1957, it narrates a carnal, mystical and intellectual experience built by transcontinental adventures alongside several encounters with sulfurous and fascinating individuals. Promptly, Jack Kerouac and his book became the quintessential leaders of the Beats while an iconic master of countercultures and transgression - a favorite of longing teenagers reading feverishly his jazz inspired texts. Yet, the writer bore little resemblance with the myth the public and media had created. Timid and conservative, Jack Kerouac often declared ‘I am not a beatnik, I am a catholic’ and in the early 1960s, he had become a supporter of the war in Vietnam and a political right-winger. The American novelist who is often considered the father of the Beat generation and the grandfather of the Hippies had turned into a paranoid alcoholic and, ironically withdrew from the Beat culture - ‘It is not my fault that certain so-called bohemian elements have found in my writings something to hang their peculiar beatnik theories on’ - and strongly despised the Hippie movement.

Tags / Jack Kerouac - American Writer - It Men - 1950s - Counterculture - Muses
Jack Kerouac by John Cohen, 1959
Jack Kerouac by John Cohen, 1959
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, 1955
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, 1955
Jack Kerouac reading at the Seven Arts Cafe in New York, 1959
Jack Kerouac reading at the Seven Arts Cafe in New York, 1959
Jack Kerouac, Al Cohn and Zoot Simms in studio during the recording sessions for Blues and Haikus, circa late 1958/early 1959
Jack Kerouac, Al Cohn and Zoot Simms in studio during the recording sessions for Blues and Haikus, circa late 1958/early 1959
Jack Kerouac on Fire Escape by Allen Ginsberg, New York, 1953
Jack Kerouac on Fire Escape by Allen Ginsberg, New York, 1953
Jack Kerouac with William Burroughs' cat, 1957
Jack Kerouac with William Burroughs' cat, 1957
Jack Kerouac by Tom Palumbo, 1956
Jack Kerouac by Tom Palumbo, 1956
Jack Kerouac by Robert Frank, 1950s
Jack Kerouac by Robert Frank, 1950s
William Burroughs and Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
William Burroughs and Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, and Gregory Corso in Greenwich Village by Bruce Davidson, 1957
Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, and Gregory Corso in Greenwich Village by Bruce Davidson, 1957
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, New York City, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, New York City, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1964
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1964
Jack Kerouac reading at the Seven Arts Cafe in New York by Burt Glinn, 1959
Jack Kerouac reading at the Seven Arts Cafe in New York by Burt Glinn, 1959
Peter Orlovsky, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs by Allen Ginsberg, Tangier, 1957
Peter Orlovsky, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs by Allen Ginsberg, Tangier, 1957
Neal Cassady and Jack Kerouac by Carolyn Cassady, 1952
Neal Cassady and Jack Kerouac by Carolyn Cassady, 1952
Jack Kerouac and Hal Chase 1945
Jack Kerouac and Hal Chase 1945
Jack Kerouac and Al Hinkle, with Jami and Cathy Cassady and Mark Hinkle, 1952
Jack Kerouac and Al Hinkle, with Jami and Cathy Cassady and Mark Hinkle, 1952
Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1944/45
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1944/45
Jack Kerouac Reading Beatnik Poetry in Lower East Side Loft, February 15, 1959. Photo by Fred W. McDarrah
Jack Kerouac Reading Beatnik Poetry in Lower East Side Loft, February 15, 1959. Photo by Fred W. McDarrah
Jack Kerouac and John Rapinic at the Seven Arts Cafe by Burt Glinn, 1959
Jack Kerouac and John Rapinic at the Seven Arts Cafe by Burt Glinn, 1959
Jack Kerouac by Joseph Sorota, 1938
Jack Kerouac by Joseph Sorota, 1938
Hal Chase, Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and William S. Burroughs, 1944
Hal Chase, Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and William S. Burroughs, 1944
Jack Kerouac by Robert Frank, New York City, 1962
Jack Kerouac by Robert Frank, New York City, 1962
Jack Kerouac and Robert Frank on the set of the film Pull My Daisy by John Cohen, 1959
Jack Kerouac and Robert Frank on the set of the film Pull My Daisy by John Cohen, 1959
Jack Kerouac and John Rapinic at the Seven Arts Cafe by Burt Glinn, 1959
Jack Kerouac and John Rapinic at the Seven Arts Cafe by Burt Glinn, 1959
Jack Kerouac by Fred W. McDarrah, 1958
Jack Kerouac by Fred W. McDarrah, 1958
Jack Kerouac Reading Beatnik Poetry in Lower East Side Loft, February 15, 1959. Photo by Fred W. McDarrah
Jack Kerouac Reading Beatnik Poetry in Lower East Side Loft, February 15, 1959. Photo by Fred W. McDarrah
Jack Kerouac, Dody Muller and David Amram, NYC, 1959
Jack Kerouac, Dody Muller and David Amram, NYC, 1959
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam, 1958
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam, 1958
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg,  Tanger 1957
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, Tanger 1957
Jack Kerouac by Tom Palumbo, 1955
Jack Kerouac by Tom Palumbo, 1955
Jack Kerouac by Walter Lehrman, 1956
Jack Kerouac by Walter Lehrman, 1956
Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg, 1950s
Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg, 1950s
Jack Kerouac and Al Hinkle, 1950s
Jack Kerouac and Al Hinkle, 1950s
Jack Kerouac and Lucien Carr by Allen Ginsberg, Columbia University, New York, 1944
Jack Kerouac and Lucien Carr by Allen Ginsberg, Columbia University, New York, 1944
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
Jack Kerouac with girlfriend Joyce Johnson by Jerry Yulsam, New York City, late 1958
Jack Kerouac with girlfriend Joyce Johnson by Jerry Yulsam, New York City, late 1958
Jack Kerouac and Gian Pieretti, 1966
Jack Kerouac and Gian Pieretti, 1966
Naval Reserve Enlistment photograph of Jack Kerouac, 1943
Naval Reserve Enlistment photograph of Jack Kerouac, 1943
Peter Orlovsky, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs by Allen Ginsberg, Tangier, 1957
Peter Orlovsky, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs by Allen Ginsberg, Tangier, 1957
Jack Kerouac by Burt Goldblatt, 1950s
Jack Kerouac by Burt Goldblatt, 1950s
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, 1953
ack Kerouac by Burt Goldblatt, 1950s
ack Kerouac by Burt Goldblatt, 1950s
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam, Times Square, New York, 1958
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam, Times Square, New York, 1958
Jack Kerouac's Hand-Drawn Map of the Hitchhiking Trip Narrated in
Jack Kerouac's Hand-Drawn Map of the Hitchhiking Trip Narrated in "On the Road », 1957
Neal Cassady, Cathy Cassady, and Jack Kerouac by Carolyn Cassady, 1950s
Neal Cassady, Cathy Cassady, and Jack Kerouac by Carolyn Cassady, 1950s
Manuscript notebook by Jack Kerouac. Diary / Whole Year of 1936
Manuscript notebook by Jack Kerouac. Diary / Whole Year of 1936
Jack Kerouac by Robert Frank, Orlando,Florida,1959
Jack Kerouac by Robert Frank, Orlando,Florida,1959
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, Staten Island Ferry Dock, New York City 1953
Jack Kerouac by Allen Ginsberg, Staten Island Ferry Dock, New York City 1953
Jack Kerouac by William S. Burroughs, 1950s
Jack Kerouac by William S. Burroughs, 1950s
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, 1953
Jack Kerouac by Elliott Erwitt, 1953
Robert Frank and Jack Kerouac, 1959
Robert Frank and Jack Kerouac, 1959
The Ten-Year Spiritual Circle of ‘An American Passed Here.  Jack Kerouac.’s manuscript notes for the novel that would become The Town and the City, ca. 1945
The Ten-Year Spiritual Circle of ‘An American Passed Here. Jack Kerouac.’s manuscript notes for the novel that would become The Town and the City, ca. 1945
On the Road, typescript, with Kerouac’s revisions in black crayon and pencil, 1955–56
On the Road, typescript, with Kerouac’s revisions in black crayon and pencil, 1955–56
 Jack Kerouac holds the original scroll of On The Road, 1950s
Jack Kerouac holds the original scroll of On The Road, 1950s
Jack Kerouac, 1950s
Jack Kerouac, 1950s
Jack Kerouac, 1942
Jack Kerouac, 1942
Jack Kerouac’s design for front cover of proposed paperback edition of On the Road, 1952
Jack Kerouac’s design for front cover of proposed paperback edition of On the Road, 1952
Jack Kerouac for the cover of Blues And Haikus, 1959
Jack Kerouac for the cover of Blues And Haikus, 1959
Jack Kerouac, 1942
Jack Kerouac, 1942
Jack Kerouac, 1950s
Jack Kerouac, 1950s
Jack Kerouac, 1940s
Jack Kerouac, 1940s
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam , 1958
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam , 1958
Jack Kerouac, 1960s
Jack Kerouac, 1960s
Jack Kerouac shows affection to an admirer at Seven Arts Cafe by Burt Glinn, New York, 1959
Jack Kerouac shows affection to an admirer at Seven Arts Cafe by Burt Glinn, New York, 1959
Jack Kerouac, 1950s
Jack Kerouac, 1950s
Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac, New York City, 1944-45
Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac, New York City, 1944-45
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam, Greenwich Village, New York, October 1958
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam, Greenwich Village, New York, October 1958
Jack Kerouac scoring a touchdown against Lawrence High School. 1939
Jack Kerouac scoring a touchdown against Lawrence High School. 1939
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam, 1958
Jack Kerouac by Jerry Yulsam, 1958
Jack Kerouac’s passport photo, early–mid 1940s
Jack Kerouac’s passport photo, early–mid 1940s
Jack Kerouac by Robert Louis Frank,, New York City, 1962
Jack Kerouac by Robert Louis Frank,, New York City, 1962
Jack Kerouac and William S. Burroughs, 1953
Jack Kerouac and William S. Burroughs, 1953
Jack Kerouac in his Columbia University football uniform, 1940s
Jack Kerouac in his Columbia University football uniform, 1940s
Jack Kerouac, 1950s
Jack Kerouac, 1950s
Kerouac family, 1930s
Kerouac family, 1930s
close

Share this picture on