50 Years Ago…On the Road

Today is the 50th anniversary of the publication of Jack Kerouac’s most famous work, ‘On the Road.’ Of the many, many things I have wondered about this slice of American history, is how Kerouac, and his other 0ff-beat friends, would have functioned in a world of myspace, IM and blogs. Their blend of diary, fiction and societal agnst is evident in surprisingly well-composed blurbs “about myself” and on social networking blogs. Blogs give us the privallge of spontaneous publication in a completley uncensored forum; what would “On the Road” have looked like if it had been ferociouly typed on a monitor without an eager editor’s red pen dangling above potentially ‘obscene’ material? Would Kerouac’s masterpiece slipped quietly into the quilt of other twenty-somethings’ rants about work, identity and relationships, or was there something inherently more wonderful about his book than our questions? Would he have written it at all if he had been afforded the opportunity to post his entries daily, in a drunken stupor right before bed? Or would it have turned into just another surprisingly well-written blurb about just another child growing up?    

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