Item #145 in my Kerouac bookshelf curation project is this hardcover 2010 Free Press 1st printing of Bill Morgan's The Complete Uncensored History of the Beat Generation. 291 pages, it measures about 6.5" x 9.5" and is in very good condition. The provenance is uncertain but it may have been a gift (purchased from my Amazon Wishlist).
Bill Morgan has written more than a dozen books about the Beat writers and may be best known as Allen Ginsberg's biographer. While Morgan's title over-reaches a bit (it is impossible to present a complete history of the Beat Generation in 291 pages), Morgan does a good job at narrating "the history of these writers primarily as a social group of friends" (inside dust jacket). Primarily focusing, of course, on Kerouac, Ginsberg, and Burroughs (along with Cassady, Carr, and others), as one would expect, Ginsberg comes across as the primary force in the movement from a literary/business perspective.
If you are a casual reader of this blog and have holes in your understanding of the Beat Generation, this is a good place to start. It definitely belongs on your Kerouac bookshelf.
Below is a picture of Shelf #5 (last one!) of my Kerouac bookshelf showing the placement of this book (9th from the left that you can see in the picture) on the day I started curating my collection. Next up: The Whole Shot: Collected Interviews with Gregory Corso edited by Rick Schober.
|Shelf #5 of my Kerouac bookshelf|