Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac & Friends in New York in 1959
There’s no shortage of Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg video footage, but most of it comes in the form of interviews. Those videos can give you a lot of insight into the two beat writers, but there’s something even more illuminating about seeing a person interacting with their friends instead of answering questions from a journalist or TV presenter.
The video below shows Kerouac and Ginsberg hanging out in New York City with some friends, namely Lucien Carr and his wife Francesca, and their three sons, and photographer Robert Frank‘s then wife Mary Frank, and their son and daughter.
Lucien Carr has become a more commonly known name since 2013’s Kill Your Darlings, a biographical film set around the 1944 murder of a former friend by Carr, and the subsequent events, which saw both Kerouac and William S. Burroughs brought in as material witnesses.
This 16mm silent film footage was shot during the summer, at the Harmony Bar & Restaurant at E 9th Street and 3rd Avenue. Kerouac draws the eye more than anyone else, showing playfulness for both the camera and the kids, who are allowed to enter the bar with the adults.
To put the video in context, Kerouac’s most famous novel On The Road had been published two years earlier, in 1957, and his book The Dharma Bums was published the year this footage was shot. Ginsberg published his most famous poetry collection Howl and Other Poems three years previous, and Kaddish and Other Poems came out in 1960.
What did you think of this video? Let us know in the comments below.
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