[Marxism] One Fast Move or I’m Gone: Kerouac’s Big Sur
lnp3 at panix.com
Wed Oct 21 14:15:15 MDT 2009
While not nearly as well known as “On the Road”, Jack Kerouac’s
“Big Sur” is just as great a masterpiece. Written in 1951 and
published 6 years later, “On the Road” marks the beginning of
Kerouac’s career, a time of great joy even as he lived in poverty.
Written in 1960 and published 2 years later, “Big Sur” was Kerouac
at the pinnacle of his fame and fortune but totally miserable.
Indeed, the main lesson of “Big Sur” is that fame can drive you crazy.
Kerouac fans and those who are interested in the creative process
in general will surely want to get their hands on the documentary
“One Fast Move or I’m Gone: Kerouac’s Big Sur”, directed by Curt
Worden. But even more it can be seen as a meditation on the
corrupting influence of money and success on the arts. In one of
the most revealing moments, Patti Smith reflects on the
ambivalence that artists have about such matters. Speaking over
the image of a Time Magazine cover, she says that Kerouac both
hated what had become of him—the bad-boy “beatnik” darling of the
mass media—as well as addicted to the very things that transformed
him into such a commodity.
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