The Beat Generation: They Were Hipsters Not Beatniks

Publication Year:
Usage 26842
Downloads 25789
Abstract Views 1053
Social Media 3
Tweets 3
Repository URL:
Huddleston, Diane M.
beat generation; beat poets; nonconformists beatniks; white negro; obscenity; anti-intellectuals; American Popular Culture; American Studies; Cultural History; History
Most Recent Tweet View All Tweets
paper description
The tragedy of the Beat Generation is that it was misunderstood, and the media perpetuated this misunderstanding, either out of ignorance or on purpose. The media, in trying to explain what the Beats were about, got it wrong and promoted a simplified, inaccurate stereotype that obscured their philosophy and minimized their contributions to literature and culture. The Beats identified with the hipsters of that time, but were transformed into cartoon characters called beatniks which became a juvenile fad that was not taken seriously.